Femi Kuti 1

How Being Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s Son Toughened Me — Femi Kuti

Femi Kuti, Nigerian afrobeat legend and son of Fela Anikulapo Kuti, pioneer of the music genre, has revealed how he always got into fights from a young age due to his family background.

The world-acclaimed saxophonist revealed this during an interview with media personality Chude Jideonwo on his talk show #withchude. The singer spoke about his upbringing as the son of the famous Fela Kuti.

Femi revealed that some of his teachers and schoolmates were harsh towards him due to their dislike for his father’s personality. He also said the death of his parents and his tough life had structured him to become a better person.

The Grammy award-nominated artiste said, “I’ve had low points. Don’t forget that the beatings of my father started when I was a teenager. Seeing him in prison, seeing his head broken, the blood on him. The school was depressing because you had both teachers that liked and didn’t like him.

“If I got in trouble with the one who didn’t like him, they beat me just because they didn’t like my father. If I don’t understand what you’re teaching, are you supposed to beat me? They had a vendetta against my father.

The singer continued, “They didn’t like me because I was Fela’s son. They’d say, ‘your father is smoking igbo.’ I would retaliate with an insult too. So we would end up on the field fighting. I was always fighting.

“If I didn’t go through those moments, I’d probably not know what to do with my life. I’ve experienced death. The passing of my mother was the worst. She was my pillar. I was lost until like three-four years ago.

“I would still wake up wanting to say good morning. I didn’t cry because I was expected to be the man. Then my wife goes and they write that Femi is going mad. It was a terrible moment that made me a better person.”

Femi Kuti is one of the most distinguished Nigerian artistes in Africa, the singer had recently been honoured with a certificate of recognition by the Grammys in connection to his seventh studio album, “Legacy” written and produced by Femi and his son Made Kuti.

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