Sunday, 20 December 2009

K. K.'s No.2 - Odo Na Abusua (1976)

Don't know much about this one other than its some lovely, bubbling highlife from Ghana. Sunny music for a winter night.


Side 1:

Yene Me Nka

Mewu A Na Mobesu Me

Abusua Ne Wo Ara

Papa Ma Me Bi Nni

Obra Ye Bona

Side 2:

Mfa Nhye Obi


Wo Begyaa Me

Odo Bra

Get it HERE.
P.S. This is a very crackly record!

Friday, 18 December 2009

Don Covay & The Jefferson Lemon Blues Band - Different Strokes for Different Folks (1970)

I was excited to find this in a fleamarket recently, mainly because I've been loving the Covay song that appears on this recent post. I initially thought that it must be a compilation of tracks from throughout his career, but then was intrigued to find that its actually a reissue of his 1970 album "Different Strokes for Different Folks". Check out the man in his finery on the original cover:
This is a great blend of deep soul, funk and blues sounds and its been keeping me entertained. Here's the excellent closing track:


Sweet Thang

Daddy Please Don't Go Tonight

Why Did You Put Your Shoes Under My Bed

Stop By

Bad Luck

Hitching A Ride

Standing In The Grits Line

In The Sweet Bye And Bye

Ain't Nothing A Young Girl Can Do

If There's A Will There's A Way

What's In The Headlines

Get it HERE.

Monday, 23 November 2009

The Best of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan Qawwal and Party Volume 1 (WOMAD/Oriental Star 1986)

About Qawwali:
Strong voices and explosive hand-clapping characterize
the devotional music known as qawwali. An
ensemble of usually 12 male performers conveys a
religious message through music and song based on
mystic poetry by Sufi masters. The texts usually deal
with divine love (’ishq), the sorrow of separation
(hijr, firaq) and the union (visal), these concepts being
symbolically reinforced and illustrated by the
music. Qawwali blends Iranian and Central Asian
poetic, philosophical and musical elements into a
North Indian base, combining popular music with
classical traditions. Following the same pattern of
combination and blending, the texts cover Arabic
and Persian, but the main text body is usually in a
simple idiom form of Indian languages: Urdu,
Hindi, Purbi and Punjabi. Qawwali is derived from
the Arabic word qaul, literally meaning “saying” but
has taken on the meaning of “belief ” or “credo” in
South Asian languages. Qawwali is spiritual in essence;
it is the devotional music of the Sufis to attain
trance and mystical experience—originating in the
10th century and blossoming into its present form
from the 13th century onwards.
Qawwali is inseparable from the name of a Persian
court musician, composer, poet and mystic of that
period: Amir Khusrau (1254-1325). Amir Khusrau
experimented with musical forms, combining the
Indian and the Persian, the Hindu Bhakti and the
Muslim Sufi to produce the present form of
Qawwali thus became a popular expression of
Muslim devotion open to all faiths throughout
Northern India. This form of music rapidly became
a vehicle for the Islamic missionary movement in
India, while at the same time reinforcing the faith of
the Muslims. In many cases, the original Persian
mystical text is followed by a translation in the local
idiom sung in the same manner as the original.
While the orthodoxy continues to reject what they
perceive as a blasphemous mixture of music and religion,
qawwali remains an expanding form of music
enjoying universal popularity in South Asia and
beyond. An even more energetic form of qawwali
developed around the 16th century in the middle
Indus at the crossroads between Iran, Central Asia
and India. This form, called the Punjabi ang, presents
the crystal-clear and profound texts of Punjabi
Sufi poetry and folk songs woven into attractive
melodies and powerful rhythms. The late Nusrat Fateh
Ali Khan belongs to this branch of qawwali.


01 Allah Hoo Allah Hoo
02 Yaad-e-Nabi Ka Gulshan Menka
03 Haq Ali Ali Haq
04 Ali Maula Ali Maula Ali Dam Dam
05 Mast Nazroon Se Allah Bachhae
06 Ni Main Jogi De Naal

Get it HERE.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Get Up and Get Down! - Various Artists (Philips 1974)

Absolutely top notch collection of rare mid-'70s funk, soul and disco. The record contains some sweet northern soul like this one from Brother's Guiding Light:

It also has a sprinkling of street-tough ghetto funk like Etta James' stunning 'Out On the Street Again':

My very favourite though (and also one of John Peel's all time favourites) is this classic from Don Covay:


A1 Act One - Tom The Peeper

A2 Brothers Guiding Light - Getting Together

A3 Al Downing - I'll Be Holding You

A4 Joe Tex - Cat Got Her Tongue

A5 King Floyd - Can You Dig It?

A6 Aaron Neville - Hercules

A7 Cissy Houston - Midnite Train To Georgia

A8 Annette Snell - You Oughta Be Here With Me

B1 Whispers - A Mother For My Children

B2 Roy C - Got To Get Enough (Of Your Sweet Stuff)

B3 Etta James - Out On The Streets Again

B4 Joneses - Hey Babe (Is The Gettin' Still Good)

B5 Don Covay - It's Better To Have (And Don't Need)

B6 Ohio Players - Streakin' Cheek To Cheek

B7 Dramatics - Choosing Up On You

B8 Little Anthony & Imperials - La La La At The End

Get Up and Get Down HERE.

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Bad Brains - Rock for Light (Abstract 1983)

The power of Bad Brains' classic 1983 hardcore album has not diminished over the years. Lightning fast and taut like razor-wire this record helped to define the sound of American punk. While Rock for Light is available on CD, the version that you can buy is completely different to this vinyl release. The CD contains 20 songs, most of which are significantly faster than the original recordings.
Check out this clip of a 1982 live show at New York's CBGB's. Total chaos:

  1. Coptic Times
  2. Attitude
  3. We Will Not
  4. Sailin' On
  5. Rally 'Round Jah Throne
  6. Right Brigade
  7. F.V.K.
  8. Riot Squad
  9. The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth
  1. Joshua's Song
  2. Banned in D.C.
  3. How Low Can a Punk Get?
  4. Big Takeover
  5. I and I Survive
  6. Destroy Babylon
  7. Rock for Light
  8. At the Movies
Get it HERE.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

L'Afrique Danse Presents Orchestre Stukas (1976)

Glorious Rumba/Soukous from the mid-'70s. This is frantic, psyched-out stuff, twitchy drums and madly phased, wah-wah guitars. Here's what Gary Stewart had to say about the band in his great book Rumba on the River:

"The Stukas Boys had gotten their start as a neighbourhood band doing James Brown covers in 1968, nearly two years before their more successful competitors Bella Bella and Zaiko came along. In 1970 the group had improved to the point that it was able to secure a booking at the prestigious Para Fifi night club...and the next year it cut some records. By than a fairly stable core had evolved that included singers Lita Bembo, Lomingo Alida, Kisola Nzita, and Suka Bola, guitarists Samunga Tediangaye and Bongo Wende, and drummer Bakunde Ilondjoko

Like the Trio Madjesi, The Stukas Boys were known less for their music than for theirgreat live performances. And Zaire's developing show system was made to order for their front man, the incredible Lita Bembo. Young and athletic, Lita...had a workmanlike voice but the instinctive moves of a premier dancer. Once on stage, he alone commanded the audience.

Samunga, barely into his twenties, anchored the band with a flashy lead guitar which he sometimes plucked with his teeth a la Jimi Hendrix. But when the 'showman' Lita Bembo appeared, no one else had a chance. 'The young man will literally dominate the scene,' reported. 'He will make the mike "suffer." Dropping to his knees like a voodoo man in a trance, exhibiting his sacred dance...Lita Bembo proves his skill by showing off his impossible postures.' After his stellar performance at Zaire 74, Salongo declared 'he set the tone for the evening. And the concert he presented to the public brilliantly confirmed his rank as a great star of Zairean music'"
Here's a clip of this great band in action on a Saturday night variety show:


01 C'est La Vie
02 Esta Bibisha
03 Colombo
04 Awuti Poto

Get it HERE.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Genius of Rap - Various Artists (1982)

This is a great archive of sounds from that delicious moment when hip hop burst out of New York's ghettoes in a blaze of spangly disco grooves and delerious, sharp tongued swagger. Here's a clip from the 1984 BBC documentary, Beat This, which featured all the great dj's, mc's, breakers and bombers of the time:

This film certainly caused a stir in my school playground, and you can watch the whole thing here.


01 Twennynine Featuring Lenny White - Twennynine (The Rap)

02 T-Ski Valley - Catch The Beat

03 Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde - Genius Rap

Afrika Bambaataa & The Jazzy 5 - Jazzy Sensation

Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five - Superappin'

Bon Rock & The Rythem Rebellion - Searching Rap

Tom Tom Club - Rappa Rappa Rhythm

Compass Point All Stars - Peanut Butter

Get it HERE.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Manitas de Plata - Manitas et les Siens (1967)

Absolutely stunning gypsy flamenco recorded live at the festival of Saintes Maries-de-la-Mer in the Camargue region of France. During the '60s and '70s, Manitas de Plata (Little Hands of Silver) was one of the most famous flamenco guitarists in the world, playing the Carnegie Hall, the Royal Variety Performance and at a United Nations gala. For purists, his music was too raw and unpredictable to be considered as flamenco, but the improvisational flair of his performances and his ecstatic immersion in the creative moment make for engrossing listening.
Here's some footage:

And just for a treat, here's another clip from Tony Gatlif's moving film about the Rom people, their journeys and their musics, Latcho Drom:


01 Eglise Maure
02 Sara La Noire
03 Hommage a Baroncelli
04 Benediction de la Mer
Side 2 Senor Carcelero - Galop de Camargue - Fandango de Manero et de Jose - Chant du Berger - Sola Lagrima

Get it HERE.

Monday, 19 October 2009

La Maya Y Otros 15 Exitos Para Su Fiesta - Various Artists

Picked up this fabulous compilation of Colombian Musica Tropical at a local bootsale. Full of cumbias and porros by some of the country's best bandleaders, it's a thoroughly entertaining listen that evokes the excitement of the dancehalls and fiestas of urban Colombia in the '50s and '60s.


01 La Maya - J. Nuncira Machado Y Su Orquesta
02 El Pelequero - Ramon Rupain Y Su Orquesta
03 Te Casas Con Ella - Rufo Guido Y Su Orquesta
04 Cojan El Hombre - Manuel Villenueva Y Su Orquesta
05 Boyo E' Yuca - Pedro Salcedo Y Su Orquesta
06 Nada - Carlos Roman Y Su Orquesta
07 La Diana - Cumbiamba Ritmo Baranoero
08 Bogota - J. Nuncira Machado Y Su Orquesta
09 La Pollera Colora - Pedro Salcedo Y Su Orquesta
10 O A - J. Nuncira Machado Y Su Orquesta
11 La Electrica - Manuel Villenueva Y Su Orquesta
12 Wellcome - Carlos Roman Y Su Orquesta
13 Falta la Plata - Rufo Guido Y Su Orquesta
14 Se Vold - Ramon Rupain Y Su Orquesta
15 Labriegos De Mi Tierra - Julio Ojito Y Su Orquesta Polonuevo
16 La Quebrada - Cumbiamba Ritmo Baranoero

Get it HERE.

Monday, 12 October 2009

Scratch the Upsetter - Revolution Dub (Anachron 1990)

"This is dub revolution: music to rock the nation"
Originally released in 1975, Revolution Dub is Lee Perry's landmark dub album. The record is the result of years of experimentation in his Black Ark Studio, exploring the phonic possibilities of the mixing desk and twisting the music of The Upsetters into impossible shapes. The group's easy rhythms are stripped bare and splashed with fragments of vocal or dialogue from a broken television set that burbles away in a forgotten corner. The whole thing is a bit reminiscent of the feeling you get when you sit in a dark room on a very sunny day.


01 Revolution Dub
02 Woman's Dub
03 Kojak
04 Doctor on the Go
05 Bush Weed
06 Dreadlock Talking
07 Own Man
08 Dub the Rhythm
09 Rain Drops

Get it HERE.

Friday, 2 October 2009

Chief (Dr) Sikiru Ayinde Barrister (The Africa International Music Ambassador) - Fuji Garbage (1988)

Here's some more of that frantic fuji music. This album has it all: frenzied talking drums, groovy out of tune keyboards and Barrister's rough toasting, it is delightfully demented.

Here's a taste of his fuji sound:


Side 1: Fuji Garbage / Lau Erebe / Four Jolly Friends

Side 2: O Dowa Agbagba / Psychology / Won Oma Doyika Ni / Awa Lolorun Fun / Hawaian System / Otunba Wahab Oshinubi

Get it HERE.

Georgian Voices - Georgian Songs

A friend recently spent some time in Tblisi, and they very kindly brought back this CD of Georgian polyphonic singing. This style of music has ancient roots and a rich warmth we don't often get to hear:
In Georgia culture polyphonic singing has been preserved as a vital part of the national identity. Georgian polyphonic tradition is likely to be older than that of Western Europe. In Georgia, it is primarily the men who do the singing. A typical Georgian song is sung a cappella by men, in three voices. However, occasionally the string instruments and panduri are used as accompaniment. In 2003 Georgian Church issued an ordinance according to which no more then three voice polyphony is eligible for official praying in churches and during official ceremonies. The chords are also the subject to be taken into account and singers are asked to avoid modern and innovative harmonic language. According to existing opinion the Georgian Church tries to preserve the old traditions and unique musical language of Georgian chants which are of hundreds of years old.

Polyphonic singing has always had its natural place in Georgian social life, both at festivities and at work. Today, the most common forum for the tradition is the dining table. Not only at banquets, but also in common restaurants, one may here a company of gentlemen singing a beautiful song in chorus. Many Georgian ensembles pass on the tradition in concert form as well.

The Georgian language, one of the four South Caucasian or Kartvelian languages, is very old. It is not related to any other living language, and its original traits are well preserved due to the land being geographically isolated. It has also served as protection from aggressors throughout the centuries.

The most significant feature of the Georgian language is its richness in consonants. Despite this, Georgian singing is never rough or angular. On the contrary, it sounds warm, generous and marrowy - both when softly affectionate, spiritually sincere or defiantly proud.

The songs had many functions in a traditional village community:
- Table songs did not only express joy at the festivities. The textual forms of blessing elevated the meal shared with a guest to the level of ritual, which both strengthened the individual participant and the community, and further affirmed the existing social norms.
- The songs of the two groups competing against one another during field work (Naduri), serve on the one hand, to organize the work and increase group productivity, and on the other, to transform the physically extremely strenuous days into a festival, where old fertility rites could continue to be celebrated.
- The perkhuli, or circle dance, also performed by two alternating groups, joins dance to words and music. Most of these songs are associated with festivals and customs of a religious nature. One finds them especially often in the high mountain regions, where religious concepts often have no more in common with the Georgian-Orthodox Church than the name.

These peasant songs, sung in region-specific ways, constitute only half of the traditional folk music of Georgia. The embodiment of this advanced Christian civilization was not only to be seen in the leading architecture of its many churches, its frescoes, icons, book paintings or its religious and secular literature. The spiritual centers of Middle Ages Georgia were also centers of religious vocal art. Here, peculiar within the Orthodoxy, a three-part form of liturgical singing developed, which for the most part, was also handed-down orally. Only in the 19th century, when Georgian churches lost their autonomy (Autokephalie) as a consequence of the Russian occupation of 1801, and the services became increasingly Russianized, did the priests and musicians begin to set down the orally-transmitted songs in written form. These constitute an important foundation for the re-birth of this vocal art, almost totally obliterated during the time of the Soviets (1921-1990).


Here's a rare glimpse of Georgian Voices singing round the dinner table:


01 The Lake Sleeps
02 Mado Chkimi
03 A Winter
04 Svanetian Lazjgvashi
05 Varado
06 Voisa
07 Bullock-Carter
08 Khasanbegura
09 Azari and Sharatini
10 A've Known You Since Long Time
11 Kakhetian Mravalzjamieri
12 Shemogmeoluri
13 O God (Choral)
14 Mravalzjamieri
15 Girl, You are so Good
16 Qalan
17 Moonset
18 Karkuchi
19 Dala Kojas Khelguajale
20 Mravalzjamieri

Get it HERE.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Le Quart de Siecle de Franco de mi Amor et les T.P.O.K. Jazz Vol. 3 (Edipop 1982)

A couple of nights ago I was lucky enough to see Odemba OK Jazz on their Spirit of Franco tour. The band take their name from the style of rumba that was popularised by Franco and is made up of Congolese musicians who now reside in Belgium and France. They're led by Maitre 'Dizzy' Mandjeku Lengo, an astonishing guitarist and veteran of Sam Mangwana's African All Stars, Tabu Ley's Afrisa International and T.P.O.K. Jazz. I think the UK tour finishes on the 5th October, and I would recommend them to one and all for a night of irresistable Congolese dance music. They really had the audience in the palm of their hands and everyone left the building sporting huge grins and a sweat.

If you can't get to see the band, here's a taste of the mighty OK Jazz at the height of their powers.


01 Tailleur
02 Katebe
03 Belle Mere
04 Tuti

Get it HERE.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Mahasti - Del o Del (Folk & pop sounds from pre-revolutionary Iran)

Mahasti, the Lady of Hearts and Flowers, was a popular singer in pre-revoltionary Iran, and this crackly album sounds like a relic from a long forgotten time, despite the fact that it was only released in the mid '70s. Its not just the poor condition of the vinyl that makes these songs sound antiquated, its also some elusive quality to the music itself. It has a weight that seems to be lacking in much Western pop musics. It is heavy, mournful. Those strings are dramatic and Mahasti's beautiful voice is filled with sorrow and weary resignation.

Here's some film of Mahasti singing a song on Iranian TV:


01 Dige Basse
02 Del Ke Gonahi Nagare
03 Bestare Gham
04 Ashki Baram Namonde
05 Saghi
06 Del o Del
07 Khonetekouni
08 Vay Be Halet
09 Dela Menat Kesh
10 Jodaiye To

Get it HERE.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

The Peddlers - Three in a Cell (1968)

Excellent bit of Hammond driven jazz-pop-lounge sounds from this band of Manchester hipsters. Here's some great footage of the band in action in the early '70s. Check the drummer!:


Comin' Home Baby
On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
Basin Street Blue
Nobody Likes Me
I'm A Boy In Love
In The Still Of The Night
Ebb Tide
Just A Pretty Song
Lost Continent
Prime Of My Life

Get it HERE.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Cumbia Cumbia - Various Artists (1989)

Tomorrow is the first birthday of SnapCrackleandPops! This is quite an achievement because I've usually got a short attention span. To celebrate we have this excellent compilation of slinky Colombia cumbias all originally released on the Discos Fuentes label between the '50s and the '80s. This is perfect dance music that combines hypnotic poly-rhythms and big fat basslines to get the body and mind moving.


1. La Colegiala - Rodolfo Y Su Tipica RA 7
2. La Subienda - Romero, Gabriel
3. La Zenaida - Hernandez, Armand
4. Amanciendo - Echeverria, Adolfo
5. Navidad Negra - Laza, Pedro
6. Cumbia Cienaguera - Conjunto Tipico Vallenato
7. Tabaco Y Ron - Rodolfo Y Su Tipica RA 7
8. La Piragua - Romero, Gabriel
9. La Pollera Colora - Los Immortales
10. Se Me Perdio La Cadenita - La Sonora Dinamita
11. El Pescuador De Baru - Los Warahuaco
12. Cumbia Sampuesina - Conjunto Tipico Vallenato

Get it HERE.

And if you enjoyed this, then get yourself over to GHETTO BASSQUAKE to download an amazing mix of jaw dropping cumbia dubs.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

The Nkengas - Nkengas in London (Orbitone 1973)

According to John at Likembe (thanks for the superb blog!) this album is not by The Nkengas, but is actually a recording by Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe and His Nigerian Soundmakers. A number of the group's players left taking the tapes with them, they started a new band called The Nkengas and released this album under that name. Very Naughty!
Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe's voice is spread like melted chocolate across all but one of the songs on the album. It's pretty unmistakable. This is feel good highlife of the very highest quality and it never fails to bring a smile to my maudlin face.

This is the song Ekene Dili Chukwu:


01 William Emeka Omambala
02 Asa Mpete Special
03 Anaedo Special
04 Unzulu Onye / Ige'Gbupi
05 Ekene Dili Chukwu

Get it HERE.

Monday, 31 August 2009

The Walking Seeds - Bad Orb, Whirling Ball (Paperhouse 1990)

This is the first of a bunch of occassional Shimmy Disc related posts. Shimmy Disc was a hugely influential New York record label that released a dizzyling variety of psychedelic/folk/noise/outsider sounds from 1987 until people stopped paying attention in the mid-'90s. SOme of the most popular acts they worked with included the legendary Bongwater, King Missile (Dog Fly Religion), Jad Fair, Lida Husik, B.A.L.L., Shockabilly, Galaxie 500, Ween, the list goes on and on.
Bad Orb, Whirling Ball wasn't released on Shimmy Disc in the UK, but this great album was produced by Kramer and is a fantastic example of the Shimmy Disc neo-psych sound.

The Walking Seeds were from Liverpool and their grungey wall of fuzzed out rock 'n' roll made them one of the most exciting UK bands of the period. Their live shows were a howling mess of feedback and wah wah, beer and sweat, properly euphoric affairs. Here's what Julian Cope's fantastic Head Heritage website has to say about this great album:

"Every good thing in the World was invented in Liverpool.... ask any Liverpudlian and they'll tell you. Humour, football,fashion, culture ... all invented in Liverpool. Another thing they invented was "Grunge" music. Yes, in 1986, a good year or two before Sub Pop, hairy Liverpool beat combo The Walkingseeds produced a debut LP (on Probe records) of loud, fuzzy, demented evil genius. This LP marked a watershed and was almost certainly exported in numbers to Seattle - it mangled The Fugs and Blue Cheer with punk rock and set the tone for things to come. The album is called "Skullfuck" and I think you can buy it on reissue from Godbless records (or just ask the girl at the counter in Woolworths!). Of course, the British music press ignored them, first in favour of shoe gazing art school boys and then later the very American bands who owed most to Liverpools finest (I'm talking Mudhoney, Nirvana, Tad,etc) but The Walkingseeds walked on, losing some personnel to The La's, getting a second album out (1989's "Down wind of atonement.."), to some acclaim, on Glass records, and then, in 1990, releasing what for many is their defining work "Bad Orb...". Like "Downwind..." before it, this album is produced by the great Kramer and also features contributions from Sonic Youth associate and sometime Dinosaur Jr. member Don Fleming, but even without their stirling efforts this album would have been brilliant! Imagine an album where the vocals are bellowed, like on Floyd's "Nile Song", all the way through so you can actually hear the singer (Frank) going hoarse (and all in that american accent that only people from the north west of England can do!), an album of malign, choppy cosmic fuzz that Killing Joke would have died for, an album that twists American delta blues and English folk shanties into strange psychedelic vistas that far better musicians can only dream of!....... Imagine all this and you can probably hear The Walkingseeds! Hell, they even relieve themselves on the bloated corpse of The Beatles, turning in a cover of "She said, she said" which is both frazzled and spot on. "Bad orb..." is a relentless,cathartic, pysch-rock album that spins with malice towards it's final conclusion ... "You're not fit to live in normal society..." hollers Frank on the final track, harking back to their grizzled debut and paying tribute to the few strange werewolf misfits who liked 'em back then. Get this album, and if you like it then look for the other stuff. They went on to do a mini ("Dwarf") LP called "Sensory Deprevation Chamber Quartet" which was produced by The Bevis Frond (and good it is too) plus a lo fi live album called "Earth is Hell". A band this evil couldn't last and unfortunately they split amid recriminations and genuine heartfelt on-stage violence during the early 90's. Ah, The Summer of Love .... that was invented in Liverpool you know. P.S. After the split bassist Lee Webster (by far the most accomplished musician in the band) went on to form an outfit called Froth and then later Rhombus of Doom, while Frank Martin (Intelligent lyricist/great singer) and Bob Parker (guitar) formed a band called The Del Bloods. Stuff may still be available from both these bands. Tony Mogan was a decent drummer but I don't know what happened next for him."

Unfortunately, there's no live footage of the band available anywhere on the net, so here's a little taste of the album:


01 The Gates of Freedom
02 Weight of these Years
03 Mortal Blues
04 Broken Cup
05 He Said, She Said
06 Peter's Trip
07 Caged Beatnik
08 World's OK
09 Skullfuck

Get it HERE.

Friday, 28 August 2009

Erkin Koray - Elektronik Türküler (1974)

Groovy psychedelic rock from Turkey that blends traditional instruments and wonderful Anatolian percussion with monstrous fuzz guitars and a '70s prog sensibilty. Erkin Koray was one of the pioneers of rock and roll music in Turkey, first releasing records in the early '60s. By the end of the decade he had adopted a more psychedelic sound. There's plenty of info on the man and his music, and his influence on the Turkish pop scene, over here. Meanwhile, here's some film of his band playing 'Cemalim' from this album:


01 Karli Daglar
02 Sir
03 Hele Yar
04 Korkulu Rüya
05 Yalnizlar Rihtimi
06 Cemalim
07 Inat
08 Türkü

Get it HERE.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Timmy Thomas - Why Can't We Live Together (Glades 1972)

The title track from this album is probably familiar to many, its deep, minimal gospel inflected
soul sound is striking and stays with you long after the song finishes. Like many 'message' songs (from the sublime 'Imagine' to the ridiculous 'Where is the Love?') this one proved popular with the record buying public, making the top 3 in the US and the top 10 in many European countries in 1972 and '73. What struck me when I first heard it was the inventive use of an early drum machine and the rudimentary production that lends the song a weird, otherworldly quality. I picked this album up at a boot sale last sunday and was unsure as to whether it would be any good, but was really surprised to find that the otherworldly reverberations seep across the whole album. Some of it comes on like someone spiked the drinks at the tea dance on the end of Blackpool Pier. The album is entirely solo. Timmy Thomas is the only musician on the album; the beatbox is built into the keyboard and he squeezes out bass lines with the foot pedals. Here he is in action (try to ignore the out of step go-go girl):

Hope you enjoy this one as much as I have.


01 Why Can't We Live Together
02 Rainbow Power
03 Take Care of Home
04 The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
05 The Coldest Days of My Life
06 In the Beginning
07 Cold Cold People
08 Opportunity
09 Dizzy Dizzy World
10 Funky Me

Get the goodness HERE.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Kalos et Buffalo - Afric Music Vol 2

Don't know much about this one. I think the musicians may be Congolese, probably from the '80s and I think its energetic soukous music with guitars like lightning.


01 Petit Nzele
02 Ntssa Ntssa
03 I Envie You
04 La Vie

Get it HERE.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

King Sunny Ade (Golden Mercury of Africa) & His African Beats - Searching for my Love (Sunny Alade 1980)

Just for a treat, here's some more sublime, cosmic juju to brighten up our days. Perfect sounds from King Sunny Ade, the Golden Mercury of Africa, and his incredible band.

Track list:

01 I'm Searching for my Love
02 She Loves Me
03 Oh Dear
04 I found my Love

05 Igbagbo Mi Duro
06 Ore Ti Afinu Han
07 Ronu Koto Sebi
08 Chief Aderibigbe Shitta
09 Alhaji Muyideen Agunbiade

Get it HERE.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Gypsy Music recorded at the Festival of Les Saintes Maries De La Mer, 1955 (London Records)

Picked up this wonderful recording of flamenco music from a local boot sale recently, and what a treasure it is. The album was released in the late '50s, but it was recorded at the annual Gypsy pilgrimage to Saintes Maries de la Mer way back in 1955. Some breathtaking performances on this disc and all the music is performed amidst a real carnival atmosphere. Here's what the sleeve notes have to say:
Gypsy Music recorded at the Festival of Les Stes. Maries De La Mer, 1955
These recordings of Flamenco music were made at the festival held in May each year by the Gypsies at Les Stes. Maries de la Mer in the South of France. In recording this festival, it was hoped to find some link between the Flamenco type voice-production and the songs of the wandering Bauls from Bengal, whose vocation is to never remain rooted in one place for any great length of time, but to roam throughout India singing religious, philosophical and amorous songs.
The researchers wondered how a recording machine would be taken by the Gypsies; perhaps they would resent it as an intrusion on their festivities. But from th moment of arrival at the festival they were accepted with a warm, naïve delight, mingled with childish shyness on the part of some of the women, although very few were at all reluctant to sing in front of the microphone. The music and dancing of these people is so powerful that one is hardly aware of material surroundings beyond the thick sound of many people clustered round the groups of singers and guitarists. Although the Gypsies come not only from Spain, but also from France and Italy, difference of language was no barrier to communication between them; it was very beautiful to see the way their music forms a strong link and means of expression between the different races.
The recordings were taken under rather difficult conditions. The Microphone was taken from one group to another, as they sang and danced night and day in the streets and arena, intoxicated by alcohol and the rhythmical fire of their music. Although there is a certain spirit of rivalry between the different groups of Gypsy musicians, they become as one, rushing to surround the singer, clapping hands, stamping feet, shouting encouragement, caught up in the throb of the music and the lust of the dancing. There is a brutal, savage quality in the wild strangely long drawn out cry of these songs and in the sadness of the Cante Jondo.
Side 1:
(All the pieces of music on this side of the record were performed by the same group singing in front of a constantly increasing audience who helped the music to grow more and more lively, also adding the necessary atmosphere to this spontaneous ensemble. The language is Spanish.)
  1. BULERIAS: Love song by a group of Spanish Gypsies now wandering in the South of France. The song is alternated with instrumental interludes, and while the singers, both men and women, performed, the Gypsy audience took active part in the performance by clapping the rhythm. The accompaniment is on guitar.
Side 2:
Artists: FARE MICHEL and party
Get it HERE.

Just to whet your appetite, her
e's a couple of great clips from Tony Gatlif's moving film about the Rom people, their journeys and their musics, Latcho Drom:

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

George & Gwen McCrae - Together (Cat Records 1975)

Great Miami soul from George and Gwen McCrae. This album swings between the smooth soul sound of songs like 'You and I Were Made for Each Other', and the dirty, sex-funk of songs like 'Mechanical Body' or 'The Rub'. Gwen McCrae has a really fantastic voice and this album has been getting a lot of play in my house over the last few weeks. Hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

A little taster:

Track list:

01 I'll Do The Rockin'
02 You and I Were Made for Each Other
03 Mechanical Body
04 I'm Comin' At You
05 Let's Dance, Dance, Dance
06 Winners Together, Losers Apart
07 Home Sick, Love SIck
08 The Rub
09 Let Your Love Do the Talkin'

Get it HERE.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Akeem Ayinla Omowura & His Apala Modernizer Band - 1985 Challenge Cup (Afrodisia 1985)

Akeem Ayinla Omawura is the son of famous Nigerian Fuji bandleader, Alhaji Ayinla Omowura. Omowura Sr. died in 1980 and his son released this, his only album that I can find, on the legendary Afrodisia record label in 1985. Can't find any information about the younger Omowura on the internet, so I'm afraid there's nothing more to say other than enjoy this beautiful music.

Side 1:

01 Challenge Cup 1985
02 Alhaji Rasaki Kolawole
03 Alhaji Mosudi Ogunsanya Enkalow
04 Ode Totori Ategun Lo Gbe Ibon

Side 2:

01 Tuntun Lo Ma Je Jade
02 Alhaji Ajasa Sansaliu
03 Baiye Se Nyi
04 Aditu Ede Mo Gbere De
05 Omowunmi Tony Adegboyega

Get the Fuji goodness HERE.