Nigerian drummer Tony Allen, widely known as the co-founder of the Afrobeats genre of music, has died.
Allen died in Paris on the night of Thursday, May 30th 2020. He was 79.
His manager, Eric Trosset, broke the news to Agence France-Presse (AFP).
“We don’t know the exact cause of death,” he said but added that it was not related to coronavirus.
Tony Allen served as the drummer and musical director for Fela Kuti‘s famous band Africa ’70 in the 1960-70s.
According to the BBC, Fela once said: “Without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat”.
He is widely credited as the co-founder of the genre alongside the legendary Fela and was described by UK musician Brian Eno as “perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived”.
He was born in Lagos in 1940, rising from those humble beginnings to become a world-famous drummer.
May he rest in peace.