World of Jazz Podcast #12 – When Teni met Fela

A  focus on Nigerian  singing sensation Teni and in between music from the godfather of Nigerian music Fela Kuti. You’ll need your jive slippers for this one……

Continuing in the traditions of Fela Kuti, Teni is now carrying the flame for feminine afrobeat. Described as ‘afrosoul’, Teni’s music combines rhythms and melodies born in Africa with influences as wide as the legendary jazz singers Nina Simone and Billie Holiday, to Bob Marley, Kate Bush and Marvin Gaye.

Developing her unique sound in the UK, Teni refined it through her ten years spent living in Nigeria. Tapping into the spirit of Fela’s birthplace, Teni discovered much more inspirational African music and got to perform on occasion with Seun Kuti and Egypt 80’. Elsewhere, whilst in Nigeria, Teni worked as a fashion designer and helped build an ethical design house named the ‘House of Makeda’. Her message of African unity and development is rooted in her first-hand experiences and prestigious education from UCL and the School of Oriental and African Studies.

Despite her parents’ advice, Teni launched full-throttle into the making of her debut album. The sensational lead single ‘Afrodisiac’ perfectly showcases Teni’s distinct and developed sound. Opening with cool rhythms and 70’s inspired, funky guitar melodies, Teni’s sultry vocals soon take centre stage. An underpinning of synthesisers and bass guitar helps bring the vocals and catchy horn sections to the foreground. Evoking similarities with 90’s singer Sade and jazz great Sarah Vaughn, the song also hints at James Brown with the funk feel that is present. Certainly, ‘afrosoul’ is a fitting description for Teni’s music.

‘Afrodisiac’ is out February 11th but is available now for download


Tracks played……and listen in here

Teni Lionheart Afrodisiac
Fela Kuti Trouble Sleep Yanga Wake Am Roforofo Fight
Teni Your Love And The Key Afrodisiac
Fela Kuti & Africa 70 Zombie Zombie
Teni Afrodisiac Afrodisiac
Fela Kuti Gbagada Gbogodo Open and Close
Teni Africa Afrodisiac
Fela Kuti Africa Centre Of The World The Underground Spiritual Game

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