For those who with a taste for the heavier side of Nigerian tunage, fuji has long been one of the musically overachieving nation’s crown jewels. Starting in the late 1960’s and growing in popularity in the decades since, fuji (named, oddly enough, after Japan’s Mount Fuji) offered powerful musical competition to the juju which proceeded it, and eventually supplanted it as the premier style for urban youths in Lagos. Mixing muslim vocal traditions with a heavy dose of percussion, the music tends towards lengthy, almost hypnotic jams, with individual tracks often pushing the half-hour mark.
Investigating Youtube for more songs to feed our appetite, we stumbled onto a somewhat surprising aspect of the genre. It seems that in the 90’s, as video cameras became more readily accessible to Nigerian musicians, fuji groups began to produce what are essentially long-form music videos, 15-30 minute films mixing live performance, dancing, street shots of Nigeria, and basically whatever else the producer seems to have felt like including. The video’s are a crazy world- all sudden edits, fadeouts, and pounding fuji drums.
There doesn’t tend to be much information attached to them, so unfortunately, we can’t offer much background. If anyone knows more, hit us up with some details!
Also, if you find these films interesting, be sure to check back next week, when we will be airing a new edition of our Hip-Deep Series focusing entirely on the Nigerian film industry.
And finally click HERE to see what may be the best video we found (but which the uploader didn’t make sharable).