By Damilola Faustino
Fela is arguable one of the greatest Nigerian artist ever and the most important African act to have lived. He’s like the African Tupac. In some ways, Fela might have been the quintessential table shaker of his time, but he’s as important today as he was then. Kalakuta Republic was Fela’s abode where he housed his family and band members and where the madness and legendary things went down. It was where he created a diversion from FESTAC ’77, that became a global spectacle. You will feel the soul, albeit a recreation. But here are the five things you’d notice on a visit to Kalakuta Republic:
The mock art of his shoes and music instruments
Fela was many things, but some of those things were afforded by his fashion accessories that typified his risqué fashion choices — sometimes, involving only pants. Asides that, he was music and enjoyed a somewhat close relationship with his family. His idea of living centered around nonconformism. The fundamentals of that are exemplified by the props you find at Kalakuta.
The grave of Fela is located at Kalakuta Republic. Seeing his grave is somewhat surreal, but so are tombs that are now home to great men. His resting place will definitely fill you with some kind of emotion.
Fela’s room is a collection of artsy eccentricities of a Maverick and the carefully selected items of a connoisseur. The man was attractively complicated, but that was the entire attraction about him. Though his room has been embellished with extra detail, you still feel some closeness to Fela in that space, especially when you hear tales from a familiar folk while in there.
Paper cuttings of Fela’s political exploits as an activist
Fela feared nothing and that made him dare some mad things. He was the daredevil who couldn’t stomach what his people suffered, so he dared death. Reportedly, some Kalakuta boys even beat some errant members of the Nigerian Military, which brought hell on Kalakuta. Fela lost his money, his freedom and started losing his mother that day. Those cuttings highlight the different things Fela did to stand out in his generation.
The Fela Essence
People like Fela have a spirit and with that comes an essence and a culture that rarely dies. Fela lives in and even in the walls of Kalakuta in 2018, a walk will tell you they’re laced with the essence of Fela, sometimes, you almost reach out and touch it.
Read also: Business Lessons To Learn From Fela
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