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Friends and colleagues of legendary Nigerian drummer and composer, Tony Allen, have continued to pay him glowing tributes.

Mr Allen died on Wednesday evening in Paris of a heart attack, National Public Radio (NPR) cited his manager Eric Trosset as saying on Thursday.

“Farewell Tony! Your eyes saw what most couldn’t see. You are the coolest person on Earth! As you used to say, ‘There is no end’,” Trosset said in a tribute posted on Facebook.

Allen, who worked closely with the legendary Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, was regarded as a pioneer of the Afrobeat genre.

He was 79.

Allen was also the drummer and musical director of Fela Kuti’s band Africa ’70 in the 1960s and 1970s.

Kuti, who died in 1997, once said that “without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat.”

In later years, Allen worked with a broad range of artistes, including musician Brian Eno who referred to Allen as “perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived.”

Allen recorded more than 30 albums with Kuti and his group, Africa ’70, which fused jazz, funk, and African traditional singing.

Allen was the drummer in the supergroup The Good, the Bad & the Queen, also featuring Blur singer Damon Albarn and The Clash bassist Paul Simonon, which released its second album in 2018.

He lived in the Paris suburb of Courbevoie.

Some of the tributes are captured below:

Ayeni Adekunle and Femi Falodun Tony Allen was a true music pioneer and alongside the late Fela Kuti, a primary originator of the world-renowned Afrobeat genre.

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With his extraordinary talent, creative genius, and remarkable work ethic, Tony Allen redefined contemporary African music. He also gave today’s generation of artistes a foundation upon which the industry’s productions, rhythm, and soundtracks are built.

He will be remembered not only for being a source of inspiration for many generations of African and global music stars, but also for being a champion and ambassador of African arts and culture, which he proudly introduced to millions of fans around the world.

While we mourn his passing and commiserate with the family on this loss, we celebrate Tony Allen’s remarkable life and will continue to appreciate all the beautiful sounds and rhythm he left us with.

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