Red Hot + Riot: The Music + Spirit Of Fela Kuti

2002
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  • Fela Mentality [Intro] Fela Kuti
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  • Kalakuta Show Mixmaster Mike, Gift of Gab, and Lateef
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  • Live At Kalakuta [Interlude] Fela Kuti
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  • Shuffering + Shmiling Dead Prez, Talib Kweli, Jorge Ben, and Bilal
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  • Gimme Shit [Interlude] Mixmaster Mike
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  • Water No Get Enemy [Intro] Mixmaster Mike
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  • Water No Get Enemy D'Angelo, Femi Kuti, Macy Gray, and the Soultronics (featuring Nile Rodgers and Roy Hargrove)
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  • Gentleman Me'Shell NdegéOcello and Yerba Buena (featuring Ron Blake)
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  • Tears + Sorrow Common and Djelimady Tounkara
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  • Shakara_Lady, Pt. 1 Common and Djelimady Tounkara
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  • Shakara_Lady, Pt. 2 Cheikh Lô, Les Nubians, and Manu Dibango
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  • Don't Worry About My Mouth-O [Interlude] Fela Kuti
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  • Zombie, Pt. 1 Bugz in the Attic (featuring Wunmi)
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  • Zombie, Pt. 2 Nile Rodgers and Roy Hargrove
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  • No Agreement Res, Tony Allen, Ray Lema, Baaba Maal, Positive Black Soul, and Archie Shepp
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  • So Be It Kelis
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  • This Is An Ashanti Proverb [Interlude] Fela Kuti
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  • By Your Side (Cottonbelly's Fola Mix) [Edit] Sade (Cottonbelly Remix)
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  • Colonial Mentality Yerba Buena
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  • Trouble Sleep Yanga Wake Am Baaba Maal and Taj Mahal (featuring Kaouding Cissoko and Antibalas)
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OVERVIEW

During the sessions for Rhapsody and Indigo, Questlove suggested that Red Hot do a tribute to Sly Stone. It seemed like a great idea, but we couldn’t clear his publishing and get the album started. Instead, Red Hot suggested doing an album dedicated to Fela Kuti, the great Nigerian musician and activist who died of AIDS-related causes in 1997.  The musicians family agreed to the project and his son, Femi Kuti became directly involved; recording “Water Get No Enemy” with Questlove, D’Angelo at an all star session that also included Nile Rodgers and Macy Gray.

That session was recorded at Electric Ladyland, but the heart of the album was created in a studio run by Andres Levin called Fun Machine in the offices of Funny Garbage, the digital design company started by John Carlin, who also co-founded and ran Red Hot. This allowed for a great deal of experimentation, collaboration and layering, which helped make the project one of Jon Pareles’ picks for album of year in the New York Times.

The artists and groups heard here, nearly 40 all told, cover the musical spectrum: hip-hop (Dead Prez, Talib Kweli, Roots), jazz (Roy Hargrove, Archie Shepp); soul (Sade, D’Angelo), Afrobeat (Tony Allen, Femi Kuti), world music (Babba Mahl, Jorge Ben), electronic music (Mixmaster Mike, Money Mark) and dance (Nile Rodgers).

Red Hot also created, in conjunction with Funny Garbage, one of the first online documentaries, Red Hot + Africa, which included footage shot in Nigeria and South Africa dealing directly with the issues surrounding HIV/AIDS.

Red Hot + Riot Live!

In 2006 a live concert was held at BAM’s Howard Gilman Opera House. With musical direction by Andres Levin, it was not only two nights of great music, but two nights for a vital cause. A portion of proceeds went to the African Services Committee, an organization which promotes the health and self-sufficiency of New York City’s African and Caribbean immigrant communities through the provision of HIV/AIDS care and support services.

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PRESS

ny times

Presented on World AIDS Day, Friday’s concert was a reunion for many of the musicians who appeared on “Red Hot & Riot,” a 2002 anti-AIDS benefit album. (Mr. Kuti died of H.I.V.-related illness.)

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all music

Good records work; great records have an organic unity. By their nature, tributes can rarely be more than good records, but somehow Red Hot + Riot manages to transcend that. In part it’s because it moves into uncharted territory, mixing African and African-American artists in ways that haven’t happened before.

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spin

It’s a much sweeter irony that the Red Hot Organization, which pioneered the concept of all-star tribute-albums that don’t suck, assembled this lively, independent-minded Fela tribute to fight AIDS in Africa.

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CREDITS

Executive Producer:
John Carlin
Produced by:
Andres Levin, Paul Heck and John Carlin