With Afrobeat being one of the most popular genres in the music industry right now, all praises are definitely due to Fela Kuti for originating the term and style of music overall. Thankfully, Carhartt WIP is doing just that for the Spring/Summer 2019 season with a fresh capsule collection that pays tribute to the legendary Nigerian music pioneer.
It’s easy to see how Kuti influenced the design process here, from a matching short set that incorporates a bold kente-inspired yellow and hunter green color theme, synonymous with traditional Pan-Africa colors, to a shirt that has “YE YE DE SMELL” etched on the back that fans of the 1971 album Live! by Africa 70 will immediately recognize. Other key Kuti notes include a long-sleeve shirt with “DRUGS ARE NOT ALLOWED IN THE SHRINE” on the sleeve — the quote is borrowed from an actual sign on the wall of Kuti’s famous Lagos nightclub of the same name — and a “PUFF-PUFF-PASS” motif that, well, signifies a particular pastime that Fela had an affinity for.
Look out for the Carhartt WIP x Fela Kuti capsule collection, which will also include a limited-edition vinyl reissue of Live In Detroit 1986, to drop on April 4 at select retailers, Carhartt WIP stores and online as well.