Monthly Archives: April 2017
“Confusion Break Bone” is a Fela Kuti song.
It’s not pronounced the way it reads. You say, “Kon-foo-shon breaky-boney”.
This song is loosely about a place in Lagos called Ojuelegba (which translates to “where the cane sellers are” or “where the whip sellers dwell”-literally, “the face/eye of the cane seller”). If you’ve ever been to Ojuelegba (at least in the ’70s and ’80s) you’ll find the song haunting and frightening.
The place was a confused mess of cars, buses, corrupt police and thugs. I saw my first dead body there. Being so young, when I heard the Fela song I just thought it was a place people went to die alone in the mud or get arrested without charge. In the 80s a governor called Jakande imposed some order on it and in the 90s it was better, but still felt…unsettling.