Drake’s ‘Please Forgive Me’ features Fela’s ‘Colonial Mentality’

Music by Nigerian afrobeat maestro Fela has been featured in a short film by Canadian rapper, Drake.

Fela, Drake. Photo: Times Live
Fela, Drake. Photo: Times Live

Titled, ‘Please Forgive Me,’ the short film is based on Drake's fourth studio album Views, which was released in April and has become the first album to reach 1 billion streams on Apple Music.

The short film of around 23 minutes uses music from Views and other sources. One of these sources is Sorrow, Tears and Blood, the 1977 album by Fela. The album was released after the Nigerian military raided the legendary artist’s Kalakuta Republic home.

Drake’s use of the Fela’s music in his short film comes just as music by Davido has been used by the Disney film ‘Queen of Katwe’. Both events signal the increased emergence of Nigerian music on the global scene—although Fela has for long been a major figure in music the world over.

Artists such as rapper Common, power couple Beyonce and Jay Z, and Nas have claimed him as influence or sampled his music. Beyonce, in particular, is said to have recorded an unreleased ‘Fela album’ a few years ago.

Drake has been instrumental in the introduction of contemporary Nigerian music to a wider global audience. First he featured on a remix of 'Ojuelegba' by Wizkid. Then he collaborated with Wizkid and the British singer Kyla on the song ‘One Dance,’ which reached the top of the US charts.

‘One Dance’ now has a video as it is one of the songs by Drake on 'Please Forgive Me.’ While the video includes an appearance by Kyla, Wizkid is absent. The video was shot in Johannesburg, South Africa.

‘Please Forgive Me’ is available exclusively on Apple Music.



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