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15 - 24 November 2024


Michael Olatuja

Michael Olatuja

Sun 14 November 2021

Stage time / 8:00pm

Doors / 6:30pm


Ronnie Scott’s,
47 Frith Street, Soho

Bassist Michael Olatuja is celebrating the release of Lagos Pepper Soup: his spectacular blend of West African Afrobeats and jazz

The London-born, Lagos, Nigeria-raised, New York-based electric and acoustic bassist/composer/bandleader Michael Olatuja has been one of the most inventive and in-demand bassists since the early part of this century. He’s worked and recorded with one hundred artists, from Dianna Ross, Spike Lee, Phil Collins, Rod Stewart, Stevie Wonder, Frozen - The Broadway Musical (Disney), Shakira, Terence Blanchard, Chris Botti, Kurt Elling, Bebe Winans and more. Current projects include Dianna Ross' first album in fifteen years "Thank You" (2021) and Lin-Manuel Miranda's movie directorial debut "Tick Tick Boom" on Netflix (2021). Olatuja has recorded Three CD’s as a leader, Speak (2009), which won an IMA award, The Promise by The Olatuja Project (2011) and Lagos Pepper Soup (2020).

Nearly five years in the making, Olatuja’s new, twelve-track CD, Lagos Pepper Soup, named after a zesty, West African meal, with lyrics mostly in Yoruba and English, and recorded in London and New York, is his most comprehensive and compelling album to date.

“The themes [on this new record] are hope, inspiration, and new beginnings,” Olatuja says. “This recording started at a very tough time in my life, and it’s cathartic and healing. I had to separate myself into two people: my older self, and my younger self, as if the older me were speaking to the younger me, encouraging me, and thus, encouraging whoever’s listening. That was the motivation for how this album happened. Most of my recordings are like that: Whatever season or journey I’m going through in my life, the music speaks to myself [and] others.”

“Always loving the work of bass player Mr Olatuja. Michael has carved out a reputation as one of the best there is and this was manifested in his acclaimed 2020 lP 'Lagos Pepper Soup', which featured the vocals of musical titans such as Dianne Reeves, Angelique Kidjo and Laura Mvula.”

Jazz FM's Tony Minvielle. Join Tony on Jazz FM every Sunday from 10am-1pm

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