Legendary and renowned Nigerian drummer, Tony Oladipo Allen who created the Afrobeat alongside Fela Anikulapo Kuti, is dead, he died in Paris, France, on Thursday, aged 80 years.
Tony Allen the legendary drummer, songwriter and composer and also Fela Kuti’s drummer, has passed away; He died in Paris at the age of 80, he worked with Fela Kuti’s band Africa ’70 from 1968 to 1979 and was one of the primary Co-founders of the Afrobeat genre music.
The news of his death was confirmed by Allen’ s manager, Eric Trosser, who stated that the Musician was taken to George Pompidou European Hospital in Paris and said his death is not linked to the coronavirus but he suffered from abdominal aortic aneurysm, adding that his death was sudden as he was in great shape.
Allen was born in Lagos in 1940 – At age 18 he learned to play the drums all by himself.
He played the drums alongside Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti in the ’60s, where they both formed a band known as the ‘Famous band Africa’ 70′, in the early 60s and 70s.
Before Fela’s death in 1997 he described Tony Allen as one of the best, stating that
“without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat”.
Late Fela Kuti recorded dozens of songs and albums with Allen in the Africa ’70, including the popular songs “Gentleman and Zombie’.
In the year 1984 the legendary drummer moved to London and finally to Paris were he died.
He was described by Brian Eno as
” perhaps the greatest drummer ho ever lived”.