Ayetoro is an internationally acclaimed Afrobeat band led by composer and pianist Funsho Ogundipe.
He was a regular at Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti’s Shrine, and formally launched into the Nigerian music scene in 1998 with his top 50 hit ‘Something Dey’ – a blues-flavoured piano-driven tune from an album of the same title.
This tune became the template for a post-Fela Afrobeat. After establishing the bands place on the Nigerian Afrobeat scene, Ogundipe moved to London beginning a musical journey that has shot him onto live performances on many world stages alongside other notables, while maintaining working bands in Nigeria, Ghana, and the UK. The collective’s members are all established musicians from Lagos, Accra, and London, with a rhythmic fluidity that bridges the gap between Afrobeat, Jazz, and Funk with reflections on the past and present of both genres.
In 1996, Ayetoro was the first group to fuse Hip-Hop with Afrobeat with the track ‘JT’s Tale’ from their album “Naija Blues”, featuring the late great rapper and actor JT West. Featuring instrumentalists inevitably meant collaborations with outstanding Jazz musicians in their own rights, like the trumpet player Byron Wallen, guitar player Jim Mullen of Average White Band, bass player Orefo Orakwue, and legendary drummer who shapes todays Afrobeat scene Tony Allen. Since 2007, the production duties in the band have been taken over by Panji Anoff, a maverick producer based in Accra who helps shape the vision and direction of Ayetoro‘s sound today.
“Ominira!” released November 13, 2017 on Funsho