Copyright a Spirit: Carlos Moore at London Literature Festival.

Carlos Moore is the official biographer and friend of the late great Fela Kuti. We met in November 2010 at The Market Theatre in Johannesburg where Carlos showed me the facsimile of the legal action that had been served on his behalf on that day that day in New York.

Headed by the received stamp of Judge Swain November 8th at United States District Court Southern District of New York it read the name of plaintif Carlos Moore. The legal action for copyright infringement against defendants: Fela Broadway Limited Liability Company, Fela Kuti NY LLC, Knitting Factory Records, Bill T Jones, Stephen Hendell and the Fela Cast Album LLC.

It reads The Fela! musical copies portions of Moore’s book verbatim. Entire portions were simply copied from Moore’s book and inserted into the script of the musical. Moore recounted – as is states clearly in the legal action – how he was approached in 2007 by the defendants for the rights of the biography. The negotiations failed but they returned to America and used the book anyhow.

The book is sold alongside the musical throughout the world. Moore has been on an international tour himself to promote the book. But he’s not been to London. I returned to England and set about booking him for The London Literature Festival at The Southbank Centre. Job done. Carlos Moore reads from the biography of Fela Kuti for the first time in England on July 7th at The Purcell Rooms in London.

Meanwhile FELA ! the musical is returning to London to Saddlers Wells from 20th July to 28th August. Carlos is a lifelong friend of the Kuti family and had just returned from a reading in Nigeria. Photographs of the readable legal action, of its text, of Carlos Moore and I, are freely available on the facebook page under my name. A legal breakdown of the case is here. Copyright protects the author's spirit by paying and acknowledging him for what his spirit has seen. Note to Colman Getty.

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