Need some positive force? Yeah, so do we.
Olafela Olafemi Anikulapo Kuti (known as Femi), the son of Nigerian Afro-beat legend Fela Kuti, is renowned for live performances that feature exultant saxophone and even more celebratory dancing adding up to a sweaty spectacle of funk.
But, as Kuti told S.F. Weekly recently, his role as a political ambassador, gets him equally worked up.
“My purpose is to bring Africa to the States and let [Americans] see what's going on in Africa,” he said, “bringing great African music and bringing out the problems of Africa so that American people can see Africa in the true light, not in the corrupt way our leaders have portrayed for years.”
His forthcoming album is titled Africa for Africa — a follow-up to the 2008 release Day y Day that has inspired so many remixes (including last year's “Femi vs. KCRW Soundclash,” by our local radio heroes) — and he's been playing some of the new stuff on his current tour as Femi Kuti & the Positive Force.
The Force's big grooves and ferocious dancing will be in abundance tonight at the Hollywood Bowl, when the season's first installment of “Jazz at Bowl” features Kuti, trumpeter Terence Blanchard with the Lula Washington Dance Theater, and Cameroonian bassist Richard Bona.
Elsewhere: Your other favorite Foo Fighter's twangy side project, Chris Shiflett & the Dead Peasants, visit the Hotel Cafe. … Celtic/bluegrass-rock veterans Carbon Leaf return to the Troubadour. … And free pizza for early arrivals? That's the slice of life at the Bootleg Theater, where See Green is joined by International Tennis Champions and Red Tide.
Also: E. Super and Scrapes at Low End Theory at the Airliner; Crooked Cowboy, John Carpenter and Lantvrn at Spaceland; Julia Nunes at the Echo; Halsted at the Silverlake Lounge; Cosmic Trigger at the Viper Room; Fear Factory at the House of Blues; Becky Kessler at the Mint; and Excizion and Cooly G at the RSVP-only Scion party at the Roxy.