Search Results for:

BONGO JOE

Ahead of the imminent second instalment of the Soul Sega Sa! compilation, Bongo Joe hits us with a sweet 7" boasting two of the greatest moments in Mauritian music.
Unique character and overexcited singer Roland Fatime (also known as Ti L’Afrique) began his career on the Mauritian scene in the early 70’s, along with the group Features of Life, with Eric Nelson’s saturated electric guitar and Raoul Lacariate’s untamed rhythms; Fatime sparked a new raw, funky and explosive Séga style.
His superb Séga-Blues lo-fi tune “Bal Souki Souki" is reissued on this very 7” along with another nugget buried on the island: “Soul Reggae Prisonnier” by Ramone, Ti l’Afrique’s ex-rival! In the same blues and soul vein, this Séga immerses us in a dramatic story of judicial error and prison environment, which are unfortunately all too familiar with some mauritian musicians!

For the casual fan of Nigerian music, certain names immediately come to mind at the mention of the phrase “Igbo highlife” - internationally recognized stars like Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe, Celestine Ukwu, Oliver De Coque, and The Oriental Brothers. Intermediate students of the genre might cite less universally lionized but still tremendously influential players like the Ikenga Super Stars, Mike Ejeagha, or Goddy Ezike. The true aficionado, however, is likely to chatter enthusiastically about someone like Franco Lee Ezute, and how he was the avatar of a spirited new take on the style that revitalized and redirected the genre in the 1970s and 80s.

To this contribution to the conversation, the purist might counter that Ezute, and others of his ilk (King Ubulu, Ali Chukwuma, Rogana Ottah, Bob Fred, Mmadu Osa International Band, etc.) despite singing in what appears to be the Igbo language and utilizing Igbo cultural motifs, technically do not qualify as Igbo highlife at all. Instead, they should be categorized as Anioma sound.

But what exactly is Anioma sound? Well, that can often be a complicated to quantify as the concept of “Anioma” itself, and both continue to stoke passionate debates: Is Anioma music simply a variety of Igbo highlife, or its own unique genre? And are the Anioma people Igbos… or something else altogether?

The word “Anioma” is an acronym encompassing the names of four language groups in present-day Delta State, Nigeria: Aniocha, Ndokwa, Ika, and Oshimili. The tongues spoken in these regions are generally considered to be mutually intelligible with standard Igbo, and are frequently counted among the over 30 distinct dialects of the Igbo language. Over the years, the Anioma peoples have variously been described as “Western Igbos,” “Bendel Igbos” and “Delta Igbos.” But many indigenes of this area stubbornly maintain that despite speaking variations of the Igbo language and bearing what sound like Igbo names, they are not of Igbo descent culturally or genealogically. Contemporary Anioma historians have popularized the theory that they are descendants of the Bini peoples in neighboring Edo State who migrated to the western border of Igboland and took on much of the language and culture. While there is not much substantial evidence to support this narrative, it’s one that is easy to believe when you listen Anioma music—specifically the highlife produced by the natives of the Ndokwa (or Ukwuani) area. On the surface it sounds like Igbo highlife, but something about it is… different.

Ukwuani highlife features Igboid lyrics, and the same kind of mellifluous, laidback guitar lines you’d expect to hear from the likes of Osadebe, but the rhythm section is often much harder. The basslines are deeper and more insistent, the percussion more aggressive and animated. In short, the rhythm is more reminiscent of Bini musicians like Sir Victor Uwaifo, Osakpamwan Ohenhen and Osayomore Joseph. This fusion of Edo and Igbo elements creates a sound of a particular intensity, one that brought new life to highlife at a time when it was sliding into the doldrums. Many players participated in this infusion of new energy, and one of the most influential was General Franco Lee Ezute.”

"June 2017, France. It’s 40° both inside and outside. At Studio Black Box, in the Haut Anjou, it is as if you were there, in Madagascar. And when the tape recorders start rotating, the musicians’ imagination feeds off the guts of their music : Malagasy bush, tropical heat, red dirt, sand, drought, corn, cassava, cockcrow, mooing zebus, lambahoany (fabric), leaf hut, fotaky house (mud), dust, portable generator, music, rhum, bodies frantically dancing whether in the dark or under the blazing sun…Tsapiky.

The album shall be named "Valimbilo". Bilo is a disease which strikes one’s mental health, depression is what western societies call it. When one is diagnosed with « voany bilo », a precise medical treatment is engaged and performed without doctors, nor medicine. To vanquish bilo, one has to use music. The sorcerer solely decides upon the “good” day (the day which gathers the most positive aspects of the astrological conjuncture) to operate: the extended family hosts a ceremony ruled by many taboos, which can last up to a few days, and in which only one remedy is applied in high dosage : some Tsapiky.
They are “doctor” musicians whom talent is source of the cure.
They play for the patient, who has to be facing the orchestra : all of their attention is focused on the bilo, dancing in the sick person’s body : It has to be awaken, seduced, surprised and attacked from every angle before it is pressured, pressured until KO, until it can’t take the it anymore, stuffed with music. Then the patient is relieved, discharged, and the ceremony is over.

During the entirety of the ceremony, the patient picks a person who helps him/her get the bilo out of his/her system, this is what we call “valimbilo”, literally “husband/wife of the bilo.” "

Max Cilla

La Flute Des Mornes

    Open your windows wide and let the summer breeze in, Max Cilla's "La Flute Des Mornes" is simply sublime music from Martinique — free-flowing, mystical roots, with lilting jazz, Latin and Cuban rhythms. Cilla dedicated himself to the revival of the bamboo flute 'of the coastal hills', which he fashioned by hand from a single piece of wood, according to ancient Indian traditions. In this recording from 1981 — a kind of Antillean sister-star to Don Cherry's Mu albums — it is featured alongside the traditional percussion instruments of Martinique. Good for souls and sundays...



    Latest Pre-Sales

    199 NEW ITEMS

    Congratulations to Dave @Santandave1 who won this years @mercuryprize with his album ‘Psychodrama’.… https://t.co/opUjTas2Lh
    Sat 21st - 10:33
    We have FIVE pairs of tickets for @lifebanduk who are playing @yes_mcr on Sunday October 27 stashed inside five ran… https://t.co/MAiqKQKDnb
    Fri 20th - 1:21
    Happy new music Friday everyone. Check out the beautiful new banners on our walls today to celebrate three great ne… https://t.co/jjALV0moWu
    Fri 20th - 8:28
    Two copies found! First come first served! Macintosh Plus 'Floral Shoppe' https://t.co/LnCszvsT8M https://t.co/yAPQF5DHDc
    Thu 19th - 12:13
    E-newsletter —
    Sign up
    Back to top