Fefe Naa Efe by the late great Fela Kuti….
Fela singing in the Akan language …it gets me every time..
“The running woman holds her breasts for beauty’s sake, not because she thinks she’ll lose them” (Twi Proverb)
A hundred years ago I decided to abandon the world of (fantasy) fashion and venture into my other passion, no not interior design (that would have defeated the object -….to get my very strict Fanti/Kwahu parents off my back) -no...Politics or Poli-tricks as I later learnt.
I went to SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies) to study ....errrmm African Politics or something along those lines and my first (and also my last) year flew by; and far from learning about some of the great and the mad and the bad of what I class as African politics like: Kwame Nkrumah (Ghana), Thomas Sankara (Burkina Faso) and Jomo Kenyatta (Kenya) etc -we learnt about Frantz Fanon -(from Martinique, and a very complicated man -me thinks) and the Shah of Iran???
Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, -you say? Yep… Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi of Iran was the topic of numerous lessons (and conversations) about African politic at SOAS -but I’m thinking that things must have changed -because they now teach Fanti and Twi at said institute!!!
As luck would have it… even though Shah of Iran is as far away from African politics as China is from Tamale -it introduced me to his fabulous wife; the very beautiful and stylish, former Queen and Empress of Iran, -Farah Diba (Farah Pahlavi). I love her name soo much that I have to say it again …Farah Diba, and again..Farah Diba -and I have loved Farah Diba’s style -ever since.
Ohhhh…. I also watched and fell in love with another fashion great -Ridley Scott’s science fiction flick, ‘Blade Runner’ -and years later, -was inspired to write a whole thesis about how actress Sean Young’s attire in said film -inspired a generation of fashion designers… But mostly …my first (and last year) was spent learning about Fela Anikulapo Kuti (the man and his music) from a very entertaining Zimbabwean brother!!! Thus, I can recognise -straight away ….any of Fela’s popular music, be it: ‘Teacher Don't Teach Me Nonsense‘, ‘Zombie’, ‘Trouble Sleep Yanga Wake Am’ or ‘Yellow Fever’ or a personal fave, ‘Fefe Naa Efe’ -where the incomparable Fela sing in my Akan language ………Enjoy x