I remember reading recently that Theo got some inspiration from Ron Hardy and that he was featuring a couple of track Hardy would champion back in his days. One dj cannot ignore the influence of djs of previous generations but one question has sparked in my mind recently, when did djs start playing african music and afro-beat in their sets? Listening to Hardy sets and other sets of the 70s and 80s (Levan of course), I can't remember whether I heard many afro-beat tracks, save for Manu Dibango's Soul Makossa. Was Fela Kuti big back in the 70s and 80s? Or is it a sound that was re-discovered towards the end of the 90s by "house" djs. If Theo was inspired by Hardy, he sure did develop his own sound, not only by producing his own stuff, making his own edits, but also by playing a wider variety of african music and jazz.
In the 90s, I don't remember too many djs playing afro-beat until I started hearing djs like Joe Claussell and Dj Spen , and later on Theo Parrish.
Some thoughts about this?