Legendary Nigerian drummer Tony Allen, who is one of the founders of Afrobeat music genre, died in Paris on Thursday aged 79, according to his manager.
“We don’t know the exact cause of death,” Eric Trosset told AFP, adding it was not linked to the coronavirus.
Allen was the drummer and musical director of musician Fela Kuti’s famous band Africa ’70 in the 1960-70s.
Fela Anikulapo Kuti, who died in 1997, once said that “without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat”.
UK musician Brian Eno describes Tony Allen as ‘perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived”. Afrobeat combines elements of West Africa’s fuji music and highlife styles with American funk and jazz.