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World: World Fusion Moods: Mood: Fun Moods: Type: Soundtrack Electronic: Dubstep World: Afro-Pop

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United States - United States United States - Oregon

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Titus Fotso

I am Titus Fotso and I bring to you the UniverSoulSoundSystem.

The soul in UniverSoul is my soul, Titus Soul, hammered in the fire of Africa’s forge.
I am Titus Fotso, a man of Africa, a child of Cameroon, a survivor of abuse and family violence.
I am the youngest of ten children by my mother.
My father has six wives, and I have twenty two sisters and brothers.
We are Bamiléké, and my tribe has over 3,500,000 individuals. I was born and raised in a patriarchal society in which men own their wives and children and are free to treat their wives and children with the heart or with the fist.
My own mother is a princess, and yet her own son, my older brother, the abusive man who raised me from 9 to 16 years old, put a gun to her head.
My mother is a lioness; she found her voice and fought back against her abuser.
My mother’s cries, her suffering and her courage, her song and her strength are in my soul and in the heartstrings of UniverSoulSoundSystem.

My brother was a sadistic monster who made my young manhood a living hell.
But I bless him for he was the force against which I pushed when I fled home as a result of abuse to find my life.

In my new life, my name was Jimmy Titus. No longer was I physically abused as I worked to become a dancer, a song writer, an artist, but abuse comes in many forms. In the city of Yaoundé as Jimmy, I battled corruption, tribalism, graft, betrayal and theft even as my passion for music lifted my spirit up into my first imaginings of the UniverSoulSoundSystem.

Yes, I traveled and toured the US with “Esuah” the National Dance Company of Cameroon, in 1994.

I was discovered in 1997 by American producer-choreographer-director Debbie Allen during her intensive casting of the movie AMISTAD, and began working with her as an Actor, Dancer, assistant and associate choreographer. Then I toured the nation as a master dance teacher and performer with the Debbie Allen Dance Institute and I am currently a Faculty member at the Debbie Allen Dance Academy in Los Angeles-California.

I was blessed to be the 1999 winner of the John Lennon songwriting contest in the World Music category with my song "Spirit Dancer.”

In 2009, I toured Europe as the choreographer for the Circus Afrika! Afrika!, created and directed by Andre Heller.

Yes, I have risen in the light of music and dance.

I came to America and reclaimed my rightful name. I am Titus Fotso. I came to live in the Land of the Free where I thought I was safe. I came to Hollywood, which I once thought was so wonderful that the name was “Holy-wood.” But there, too, friends betrayed me and tried to destroy my bliss, which is music and dance.

I thought things would be different in America. But I was wrong. I had the rare vantage point of seeing, and experiencing, in real time, how institutions protect one race, class, ethnic group, or gender against another. I am one of the many victims and survivor of the racist police force and “system.”

There is so much evil in the world! I suffered abuse as a child, and I have been shaped into a man by dark forces. But in Maya Angelou’s immortal words, “Still I rise!”
The UniverSoulSoundSystem contains and embraces all of humanity, both shadow and light. These songs are to end abuse, to expand the soul of the people with rhythm and joy--one world, one love, one UniverSoulSoundSystem.

My name is Titus Fotso, and I am a Citizen of the World. I have survived all to bring to you my soul, my vision, my music and my dance.

You, too, are a Citizen of the World, and you can help bring the UniverSoulSoundSystem to life with your donation of any amount. I welcome your friendship and support, and I welcome you to a joyous performance of the UniverSoulSoundSystem!

Currently, my adoptive and native home are in vast social turmoil. There is a crisis of extreme Capitalism, racism, political and religious extremism, tribalism, and more.
However, I believe in the power of Art, music and dance in bringing people and communities together, for grievance, healing, empowerment, conscientization and positive change for the greater good of humanity and the world.