Africa: A Journey into Music

Africa: A Journey into Music
(Image credit: BBC/Sundog Pictures)

Rita Ray traces Africa’s musical influence on the West

Rita Ray – presenter, DJ and singer from 1980s rhythm and blues revival band Darts – explores the enduring influence of African music on popular culture in this new three-part series.

She begins in Nigeria, where Rita outlines a brief history of the ‘source of the sound’ – the drumbeat ubiquitous throughout Africa.

Rita then heads off to meet pop royalty King Sunny Adé, who became the first Nigerian to have success in the West with his 1982 album Juju Music.

Rita is clearly having a blast as she meets her musical heroes, including Victor Uwaifo of Guitar Boy fame and Femi, the son of high-life legend Fela Kuti, and his musical protégés who have blazed a trail in afrobeat, afrosoul and funk. An hour of joyful rhythms you can’t help swaying along to.