UPR!SE is a blog dedicated to The Shrine's Patron Saint and inspiration, Fela Anikulpo Kuti.

The blog focuses on music, fashion, art, design, politics and culture. It is a celebration of trailblazing souls who rise up without compromise.


Saturday, May 28, 2011


The cruel irony of life is that many times our strongest voices are consumed and silenced by the very same ills they rally against. Gil Scott Heron spent his entire career giving voice to the struggles and experience of Black Americans. He fell prey to the same vices he talked of in The Bottle and Home Is Where The Hatred is. Sadder, is he seemed to have begun to outrun his demons in recent years, recording his first album (I'm New Here) in sixteen years. His influence on what has become known as modern Hip Hop cannot be under-estimated. KRS-One, Public Enemy, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Blackalicious, Lupe Fiasco... all have taken pages from Heron's book. Sad day. Let's hope more people will pick up on his message. We need more Hip Hop artists and less rappers these days.

"the message is here: inside the man / bubbling brain cells and heart-soul cells /
ax-cell-er-ating faster until understood / and used and passed on and used and
passed on and used and..."

-Gil Scott-Heron

Friday, May 27, 2011


At the old Ontario Motor Speedway, April 1974
300,000 + fans attended this huge rock festival, produced by ABC

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Bunch of re-issues dropped recently, covering some less traversed territories. Senegalese singer Idrissa Diop's pre-France career is examined in 'Diamonoye Tiopite L'Epoque De L'Evolution'. The set reveals the Cuban Descarga influence on the 70s Senegal scene.

Dig The 60s/70s psychedelic sounds found on the Roots of Chicha compilations? Then you are on the right track with 'El Sonido De Tupac Amaru'. Trippy production abounds, with echoes + delay, fuzzy guitars and groovy organs.

Originally released in 1977, L'Orchestre Kanaga De Mopti from Mali has a similar combination of vibes as the 'El Sonido' comp, mixing traditional Malian instrumentation and rhythms with some space-y production techniques, along with electric guitar and organ.

Akeeb Kareem's 'Blackman' was self-produced in Lagos, Nigeria in 1974. Soundway type of grooves here. Think Afro Psych Funk and you're getting warmer...

Nice to see some new labels getting in on the re-issue action too!


Friday, May 13, 2011

CAbP (LIVE) + AfroFusion w/ DJ Dee Money: 5.21.11

UPR!SE RETURNS PARTY PEOPLE! The Shrine signature quarterly hits harder with an extra edition Saturday, May 21.

People get ready! A riot is goin' down next Saturday night as The Shrine welcomes Chicago Afrobeat Project back to the stage. The ten piece afrobeat/soul/jazz/hip hop monster continues its spring/summer rampage with the second of three shows. Fela to the funk indeed, CAbP bring massive heat to the stage with fiery solos all around and a packed stage including dancers and even live painting... The party goes all night with AfroFusion kicking out the jamz after the show. DJ Dee Money spins naija jams, reggae, afrobeat, hip hop and more until 3am. Dancin' time for dancers!

Doors 8pm/Show starts 9 sharp/Dance 'til 3am!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


Today, March 11, marks the thirtieth anniversary of the death of Bob Marley. The Reggae star would have been sixty-six years old. Marley's music transcends the Reggae genre and crosses cultural and linguistic barriers.

A documentary about Bob Marley will be previewed today at the Cannes Film Festival, marking the 30th anniversary of the legendary Reggae artist's death.

"Marley," directed by Oscar-winner Kevin McDonald, will feature his family's private archives of music, photographs and film, BBC 6 Music reports.

Listen to an interview with the director below:

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Nigeria 70 Vol 3 – Sweet Times

Sweet Times, indeed – Strut Records returns for another truly great volume in their Nigeria 70 series – this one covering the highlife, juju and Afro Funk music of Lagos in the 1970s – stellar material that has never been issued outside of Nigeria before now! There's a pretty diverse cross section of the sounds coming from the region at the time – from upbeat funky Afro Soul to psyche-infused guitar and percussion jams, jazzier instrumentation and impassioned vocals – most crucially, fusions of jazz, funk, soul, juju and highlife. Wonderful, wonderful material that stands proudly with the other great entries in the series.

Huge fan of this series. Volume One fetches some dough on vinyl these days.... Not givin' up my copy though! Nice to see the folks from Strut are back up and running and once again bringing the goods to the headz!

Lifted from DUSTYGROOVE Buy it there!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


The Shrine is the only place to be on Friday, May 6th. Ky-Mani Marley joins Sister Nancy ('Bam Bam') and local favorites Akasha for a hot night of the finest in Reggae soundz and more...!