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Babatunde Olatunji

Nigerian-born drummer Michael Babatunde Olatunji grew to international fame beginning in the late '50s with his groundbreaking 1959 Capitol Records debut Drums of Passion. The album was a huge hit, remaining in print for decades and standing as one of the first examples of the American record-buying public taking an interest in international music. Jazz kingpin John Coltrane took a particular liking to Olatunji's music, and the two became friends, eventually going so far as to collaborate on the opening of Olatunji's Center for African Culture in Harlem, an institution founded in 1965 to offer classes centered around African culture. Along with recording his own albums throughout the 40-year period following Drums of Passion, Olatunji played with a host of stand-out artists of multiple genres, making guest appearances on records by jazz greats like Cannonball Adderley, Horace Silver, and Max Roach, as well collaborating with artists who ran the spectrum, from Stevie Wonder to Bob Marley. Guitar rock gods Santana re-interpolated an Olatunji composition on their debut album, and several members of the Grateful Dead contributed to his 1986 album Dance to the Beat of My Drum. Olatunji went on to work closely with Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart and vocalist Flora Purim on the Planet Drum project. His work was tireless and included work on music for films and Broadway productions, drumming workshops, political activism, and a lengthy stint as a musical educator. Olatunji suffered from diabetes and eventually succumbed to the disease in 2003, but he actively recorded and taught in the years leading up to his death, leaving behind a legacy of healing music and social outreach. ~ Fred Thomas, Rovi
full bio

Comments

I don't think much of this ? "bio" ? either.
Whoever wrote it needs to approach Mr. Olatunji`s music from a VASTLY DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE! ! ! What part of it needs to be like anything else????? It's unique & beautiful JUST THE WAY IT IS, & so was our dear Baba.
They should stick to the music they know something about.
I remember going up to Baba's studio on 125th Street in the early sixties and being entranced by his presence and his music that resonated deeply in a part of my soul that was just awakening. Here was this hi yella teenager from Queens becoming culturally aware of his Blackness through the likes of people such as Imamu, DuBois, Nina and Olantunji - an era of cange inside and out - thank you Baba!
The people who wrote this are biased and uninformed. Pandora should be ashamed to have this critique associated with Olatungi and his legacy of the incredible healing power of rhythm music. I am the Drum, you are the Drum, we are the Drum. Pandora, please rectify this grave injustice now!!
Baba Olatunji was an astounding musician,& a dear,joyful, k i n d h e a r t e d soul. I will never forget him. His music literally & figuratively saved my life,more than once. He was truly a blessing!
The two who wrote this critique are two knuckleheads . They have no idea of the significance of Olatunji and what he brought to and meant to the Black struggle in the 60's. They most likely were not even born yet.
Baba Olatunji was a great musician who brought people all over the world together through the unity of rhythm, voice and dance. He introduced African culture and inspired people to connect with their roots. He taught me that rhythm is the soul of life, everything you do has a rhythm. It is important to pay attention to your rhythm! The name of his group was Drums of Passion.
naturally.gi m b y a
The Shango Chant <3
what a nice album!!!
james.glines
the beats take me into daydream land...good thoughts and inspiration
Makes me realize that I was born to play drums. Thank you Lord for this gift!
The bio above is filled has a number of inaccuracies . Baba came to the United States in 1950 to attend Morehouse College in Atlanta. He was interested in becoming a diplomat, he did not come to study medicine. Later after moving to New York City to attend NYU for graduate school he organize a drum and dance ensemble and performed at Radio City Music Hall. His first album entitled Drums of Praise became the name of the ensemble.
Strangely, his name is dropped on Bob Dylan's 2nd album The Freeweelin Bob Dylan.
tomal154
purchased his album in 1958. Finally met him in person At "The Newark Center of Performing Art" A great person and will be missed in the world of percussion.
tafari_sudra
A Great master

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