Tony Allen’s first 4 solo albums, recorded with Afrika 70 at the height of their power as Fela Kuti’s band, are seminal recordings in the pantheon of afrobeat history.
With Comet Records’ new reissues of these records, we have the opportunity to shine a light on the sheer musicality and originality of the humble drumming giant. Tony Allen’s passing in April 2020 sent a shockwave across the world, as fans and collaborators from Lagos to Brooklyn and everywhere in between mourned the loss of a generous and powerful being, the kind of being we thought would live forever. Thankfully, we have the gift of Tony’s timeless music, starting with these 4 special solo albums, through which his musical voice guides our dancing feet and full hearts forever.
Produced by Fela Kuti in 1975, Tony Allen’s first solo album with Afrika 70, Jealousy, is like the man himself: light on its feet yet deeply settled, spacious yet bursting with magical talent. On the title track “Jealousy,” Tony is joyously in his element, conducting one of the mightiest bands in the world - he is the head chef, and the band is cooking. The second track, “Hustler,” features one of the most iconic solos in drumming history, a rare glimpse into Tony’s gift of musical phrasing - it is possibly the best example of Tony’s ability to literally speak through his beloved drumset.