That Fela! got me thinkin / by Randy Ortiz

Friday night Momma Giant and I went to NYC for a night of Fela! on Broadway, I came back gears turning and wondering what I'm doing. The experience (more than a show) was an amazing one, the acting and music (Antibalas!!) is something to rave about as it was done in a fantastic manner. The moving story at play of Fela Kuti went beyond art and quick thought. It was also a self-reflection as to what is my role in this burning world. Sure everyone was moving in their seats to the sweet sounds of Afrobeat but there was a bigger groove to be taken from this as well. There was a fighting soul in Fela the man and for what he stood for, I also think much of that fight, strength and boldness is gone today because of our comfort zones. We (myself included) have taken a seat to the world's problems just because they don't supposedly affect us. As I sat there in my seat marveling at the stage and hearing the soul transforming sounds of Kuti I started to think. "What do I stand for and what am I doing to make a change?" and "Does anyone care about anyone besides themselves now?" ran thru my head the whole time. I try to help good causes by offering what I can do, but I know I could do more and have promised myself to help make this world a better place. There are too many issues and too many of us in comfortable positions in life... why don't we decide to help? Yes we all work hard to earn our comfort zone, but we have to remember that we also as people inhabiting this earth owe it to our brothers and sisters (no matter the country or religion) to also lend a hand when needed and able to do so. I for example don't like drinking water yet some neighborhoods don't even have 1oz of clean water that is drinkable. We toss good food away and we also toss the thought that another child is going to bed hungry tonight... because it bothers us. There are many causes out there to fight for but we sit and watch it on the news/sites then just keep it moving by saying "wow that's horrible" and on to the next reality show. I for one will not stand around anymore and keep seeing destruction and hunger kill off our people. Fela Anikulapo Kuti your music has always moved me but your story and this play has changed something in me for the better.

By the way that night was extra special because it was Nigeria's 50th anniversary of Independence and Patti LaBelle as Fela's mother was amazing.