With the release of his latest track, "Talk" — a banger that's loaded with social and political commentary — rapper and singer, Falz unwittingly invited a multitude of comparisons between himself and the musical legend, Fela Kuti.
Fans of Falz raced to Twitter to praise his perceived social awareness, whilst also slamming other afropop stars who have, in their opinions, baselessly compared themselves to Fela in the past, particularly Wizkid and Burna Boy.
DAMN!!! FELA - FALZ - FUTURE. pic.twitter.com/V3LVra8G1i— Tradoeh Trizzy (@tradoeh_trizzy) January 11, 2019
Fela dropped the weed and Mic, Wizkid and burna picked the weed but Falz went for the mic #talk— Uncle Savage (@Uncle_savage00) January 14, 2019
As we saw when Kanye West flagrantly asserted that he had the spirit of Fela flowing through him, Seun Kuti is not one for these flimsy comparisons to his father. Addressing Kanye West via Instagram, Seun Kuti humorously set the record straight, saying:
"On behalf of the Kuti family , I want to state that the spirit of Olufela Anikulapo Kuti isn’t anywhere near Kanye West."
As the most vocal of Fela's children, Seun Kuti, speaking with Television Continental (TVC), reiterated that his father's legacy should not be bastardised by musicians who are comparable to Fela in only the most superficial ways. He said:
"I will not let people bastardise his legacy. Everybody who wants to smoke igbo, chase plenty girls… so for those reasons you’re Fela? No no no…"
It is doubtful that acts such as Burna Boy and Wizkid believe they are comparable to Fela solely due to their mutual love of women and weed, but Seun Kuti's disapproval is a good indication that people should be a bit more thoughtful when dishing out the title of 'Fela Reborn'.
With that said, by mentioning that his father would not be a supporter of the current political class, Seun Kuti inadvertently lends credence to this latest likening of Falz to Fela. Regardless, the comparisons are rather needless, as both Fela and Falz are incredible musicians in their own right.
Hopefully, the music industry can take heed of Seun Kuti's words and refrain from ushering out unfounded correlations when an artist does something remotely similar to what Fela did, or what we imagine he would do if he were still alive today.
Watch the full TVC episode below: