There’s a new Netflix film about the history of Afrobeats.
The documentary features exclusive interviews and footage that captures from events and moments both local and international that tell the story of Afrobeats.
“Afrobeats: The Backstory” was created by a Nigerian who lived Afrobeats, who knows back stories and the context, Ayo Shonaiya. Powered by Boomplay, a music platform now deeply invested in Nigerian music.
Ayo Shonaiya has been active in the Nigerian music industry for decades and he has played a pivotal role in engineering the domestic rise of Afrobeats as well as its export to the United Kingdom and the United States.
There are over 300 hours of never before seen tapes that capture key moments. The moments that feature the early days of some of the biggest names in Afrobeats, the documentary is an exclusive trip back in time.
Additionally, the documentary dives into the role played by different stakeholders. That includes the artists, DJs, Marketers, the diaspora, and even the very source of Afrobeats.
Shonaiya privately premiered two episodes of his much-talked-about documentary at an intimate cinema in Lekki. What immediately stood out was the detail and the scripting. Particularly, the story of the five-beat pattern, which Shonaiya told through three countries: America, Nigeria, and Ghana.
He traced the origin of Contemporary African Pop music back to Kpanlogo, a traditional Ghanian sound, which represents the background percussion of African pop music, regardless of BPM or sonics.
While the story significantly heralds Afrobeats from the Nigerian perspective, it gleans important parts of Africa, to present rounded perspectives.
“Afrobeats: The Backstory” is now streaming on Netflix.