The Mysterious Story Behind Beyoncé' s Fela Kuti-Inspired Album

The Mysterious Story Behind Beyoncé' s Fela Kuti-Inspired Album

The-Dream explains how shelved project birthed "End of Time" in Genius.com post.

Published March 25, 2015

Sometime before Beyoncé released 4, she recorded an entire album inspired by the late Fela Kuti that was never released but inspired another song, The-Dream has confirmed.

The producing phenom behind Bey’s cult hit “Single Ladies” shared the story in a Genius.com post about “End of Time.” 

| BREAKING TRADITION: ALBUMS THAT DIDN'T DROP ON A TUESDAY |

We did a whole Fela album that didn’t go up,” he explained. “It was right before we did 4. We did a whole different sounding thing, about 20 songs. She said she wanted to do something that sounds like Fela. That’s why there’s so much of that sound in the 'End of Time.'”

An entire album influenced by the Afrobeat pioneer is one of many of her projects that we haven’t heard. “There are always multiple albums being made,” continued The-Dream. “Most of the time we’re just being creative, period. We’re talking about B, somebody who sings all day long and somebody who writes all day long. There’s probably a hundred records just sitting around.” 

The Houston native, who has spoken of Kuti’s impact in the past, finds inspiration around the globe. Apart from collaborations with Australian singer/songwriter Sia, Bey called on Mozambican dance trio Tofo Tofo for the “Who Run the World (Girls)” music video. She also features a speech on feminism from Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie on the track “Flawless." 

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(Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Written by Latifah Muhammad

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