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Ronald Mesquita

Bresil 72

    This classic Brazilian album from master drummer Ronald Mesquita was originally released in 1972 and features songs by Jorge Ben, Antonio Carlos-Jobim, Gilberto Gil, Edu Lobo and others. Mesquita is probably most well-known for playing with Luis Carlos Vinhas and his ‘Bossa Tres’ outfit, along with his own group, ‘Ronie E A Central Do Brasil’, that he formed after his return from the US in the early 1970s. He also played on several songs on Tenorio Jr.’s ‘Embalo’ album that Mr Bongo recently reissued. The killer track ‘Balanca Pema’ was very big in the Jazz Dance scene in the 90s and also featured on the Mojo compilation ‘Dancefloor Jazz Volume Four’. Madlib sampled ‘Balanca Pema’ on his Medicine Show Number 2 ‘Flight to Brazil’.

    Rob

    Rob

      The Accra-born pianist and frontman only released a few albums in small quantities, yet two of them are among the most sought-after records from 70’s Africa. This was the first.

      So what do we know? After learning his craft in Benin and playing with the likes of Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou, ROB returned to Accra to write his own material and find a sound.

      Hooked on the driving funk and raw soul of stars such as James Brown and Otis Redding, he would often imitate his heroes on his father’s piano during school holidays.

      The title track sets the pace with a JBs-like rhythm, ROB almost shamanic with his sparse yet commanding vocal. The organ and wah-wah guitar spin us out before those imperious horns bring us back in.

      And what better way to close this set than with ‘More’, swept up in a call and response between Rob and his backing singers as a ‘Blow Your Head’ synth flares and the brass blasts. Good times guaranteed.

      As the man himself says, “Funky music is in my blood. What you hear is the coming out of my mind.” No one sounds like Rob, because there is no one like Rob.

      Spaceark

      Spaceark Is

        ‘SpaceArk Is’ came out on Color World records in 1976, on a limited run of about 5,000 copies. It followed their self-titled debut on the same original label, the year before. For a handful of years in the Seventies, SpaceArk was one of the most promising and electrifying bands in Southern California. Although their music was far greater than the sum of its parts, those parts made for a very original style. R&B, soul, rock, pop, jazz, classical ... it all came together in blissful stream of intricate compositions that swept up crowds from US military bases to Northern Soul clubs around the UK. SpaceArk wrote and performed more than 100 songs during their time together. Most of them were not recorded and are now either lost or forgotten.

        Trio Mocoto

        Trio Mocoto

          Classic Brazilian album from 1977, featuring the incredible ‘Nao Adianta’ and a brilliant cover of Jorge Ben’s ‘Que Nega E Essa’.

          Luiz Carlos Fritz (Fritz Escovao), Joao Parahyba and Nereu Gargalo aka Trio Mocoto are most well-known as Jorge Ben Jr.’s backing band. They played on several seminal Jorge Ben LP’s - his self-titled from 1969, Forca Bruta in 1970 and Negro E Lindo in 1971.

          Trio Mocot were also key players in the development of the ‘samba rock’ sound - a fusion of samba, soul and rock influenced by music from the USA. Official Mr Bongo reissue. Licensed from Arlequim.

          Rich, deep, percussive soulful folk album from master Togolese singer, Akofa Akoussah, the record moves through uptempo afro-folk-funk on ‘Tango’ to deep ballads of ‘Ramer Sans Rame’ and ‘I Tcho Tchass’ and lighter moments on ‘G Blem Di’ and ‘Mitso Aseye’. Akofas exceptional songs and soaring vocals are decorated with percussion, guitar lines, subtle backing vocals and horns to create a unique, rich sonic. The album was recorded for release by French label Sonafric in 1976. Produced by Gerard Akueson; founder & owner of African record label, ‘Akue’, based in Paris.

          Music was truly in the blood of Julie Akofa Akoussah. She began singing at the age of three, inspired and led by her mother and older sister and became principal soloist in her school choir, St. Peter & Paul Choir of our Immaculate Conception Parish of Nyekonakpo, at the age of 8. From there her career blossomed, and singing often took precedence over her studies. In order to master her art she spent time studying and working closely with local groups including Melo Togo, Rocka Mambo, Rio Romamcero, Ok Fiesta, Eryco Jazz, Afro Cubano, Los Muchacho, Elegance Jazz and Togo Star amongst others.

          In her own words: “Luck opened the door in January 1966 where I had the honour of being selected to share the stage with Bella Below - one of the best voices of Africa - at the 1st ‘Negro Arts Festival’ in Dakar. On my return, I was approached by Ambroise Ouyi, the highly respected singer & poet, and we wrote ‘Tu Ne M’Ecris Plus’, my very first opus."

          The popularity of her work led to an increased exposure for Togolese music outside of the country, in neighbouring Ghana and Benin most notably. During her career she collaborated and performed with greats including Manou Djibango, Queen Pelagie, Abeti Massikini, Aycha Kone and Myriam Makeba. Akoussah was also dedicated to, and widely recognised for, her work for social causes, championing and nurturing young musical talent, and the fight against AIDS. She was president of the National Union of Artists Musicians of Togo (UNAM) before sadly passing away in April 2007 after a long illness, at the age of 57.

          "Don’t Stop" is another one of those private press treasures from a dynamic group of musicians seizing the moment and making magic at Sunset Sound studios in LA. This 45 features soaring lead vocals of Dolly Way and was also released as ‘Dolly Way & Space Ship Earth - Don’t Stop’ on Color World - using the same catalogue number - in 1976, but this ‘Spaceark’ version is harder to find now. Built on the solid foundations of syncopated percussion and wild bass riffing, the track soars into orbit via starry horns, heavyweight vocal hooks and those searing organs every jazz-funk jam has to have. Vibing!

          All-time classic Brazilian album, featuring Jorge Ben on ‘Que Maravilha’, ‘Zana’ and ‘Carolina Carol Bela’ as sampled by DJ Marky on ‘LK’. Brazilian guitarist and singer Toquinho (real name Antonio Pecci Filho) was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil in the 1940’s. His first major hit single was ‘Que Maravilha’, as featured here, that he wrote with Jorge Ben. This album also features ‘Zana’ and the ultra-famous ‘Carolina Carol Bela’, also written with Ben. Toquinho had a prolific career releasing a huge number of albums and writing on even more. He released many records with Vinicius De Moraes during the 70’s. ‘Carolina Carol Bela’ was sampled by DJ Marky on his drum n bass hit ‘LK’ - the track that launched the sound of Brazilian drum n bass outside of Brazil.

          Cesar Mariano & CIA

          Sao Paulo Brasil

          'Sao Paulo Brasil' is one of the finest Brazilian jazz funk fusion albums ever recorded and thoroughly deserving of its cult status. This is its first official reissue outside of Brazil. Cesar Camargo Mariano is a celebrated Brazilian jazz pianist, composer and producer, born in Sao Paulo in the 1940’s. He has played and worked with the likes of Elis Regina (to whom he was married at one point), Som Tres and Sambalanco Trio and still plays very regularly today. ‘Sao Paulo Brasil’ saw Mariano and co. step deep into jazz funk/fusion territory - and nail it. Tight, tough drum grooves, intricate arrangements, layers of synthesisers, percussion and FX transport and tell a story from the first beat.

          Tim Maia

          What You Want To Bet ? / These Are The Songs

          Debut single from the mighty Tim Maia, released upon his return from the USA in the late 60’s. Maia sings in English here - influenced by his time spend travelling and working in the USA. Both songs are very soulful, reminiscent of the great soul singers of 1960’s USA, who were clearly a powerful inspiration to him.

          Carlos Sodre

          Ciumeira / Rasga Teu Verso

          Dismayed at the prospect of a harsh British winter, Mr Bongo fly south to Rio for the foreseeable, bringing us a gorgeous double sider of uptempo vintage MPB samba jazz from Carlos Sodre, originally released as a 33rpm ‘compacto’ 7” single on Copacabana in 1965. On the A-side, "Ciumeira" shuffles and sizzles with snake hipped rhythms, heavy guiro and Technicolour orchestral arrangements. On the B-side, "Rasga Teu Verso" drops the intensity for a more sultry swing through the smoke and sweat of the jazz bar. 

          Brilliant tracks like 'É Necessário', 'Verão Carioca', 'Venha Dormir Em Casa' or 'Musica para Betinha' make it one of the strongest albums to come out of Brazil in the 1970s. Presented in facsimile artwork and pressed on 180g vinyl.

          Tim Maia was born in 1942 in the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro and started his musical career at an early age, along with close friends such as Roberto Carlos or Jorge Ben. Carlos would eventually help him to get a deal for his first single at CBS. During the 70s Maia started to incorporate soul and funk elements into his style. After a two-year period involvement in the Racional cult in Brazil, Maia's funky style was still at its best when he released this album in 1977. It was his first and only recording for Som Livre, the legendary label that became extremely popular due to the many soap operas soundtracks in its extensive catalogue.

          This self titled LP deserves to be shortlisted among Maia's top records. It features killer tunes like the anthemic 'É Necessário', undoubtedly one of the best songs in his career, and also boogie gems such as 'Verão Carioca' or 'Venha dormir em casa' that show obvious influences by some of the biggest American soul artists of the time. It also contains intimate vocal delights as in the lovely smooth tune 'Musica para Betinha' or even straight funky instrumentals like 'Flores belas'. The string arrangements, wah wah guitars, horns, deep vocals make this recording a milestone in the so-called "Black Movement" in Rio, where artists like Toni Tornado, Banda Black Rio and Maia himself were bringing in the funky sounds of America and mixing them with local rhythms like samba. 

          Brilliant self-released, private-press jazz/soul LP from 1975, recorded at Sunset Sound studios in LA. This is the super-rare debut album from SpaceArk, a band of brothers on an interstellar voyage to discover “electrifying new sounds”. It’s another one of those private press treasures - a dynamic group of talents seizing the moment and making magic in an astounding 12-hour turnaround.

          Widely available for the first time in forty-five years, featuring ‘It’s A New Day’, one of the most sample breaks in history.

          Record collectors, producers and crate diggers like a good creation myth, and Skull Snaps’ self-titled ‘debut’ had it all. A mysterious funk trio, who recorded one album under a curious name, housed it in a sleeve that looked more like a proto-metal album, and released it through a label (GSF Records) that folded shortly afterwards? Everything pointed towards the Skull Snaps album as a single totemic object, packaged in a way that predicted its own disinterment almost twenty-five years later.

          For those who sampled it, myth maintenance was advantageous, both for their reputations and for their consciences. Likewise, an unsanctioned 1995 reissue on Charley Records removed the credits from the inner sleeve to further sever the record from its context - or perhaps because the label couldn’t quite face using the names of artists they had no intention of paying. Either way, owning the record was a right of passage, as Amir Abdullah once wrote: “If you don’t have Skull Snaps in your collection, your collection is weak.”

          Featuring sleeve notes by Anton Spice. Licensed from Sam Culley.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Barry says: One of the most legendary funk oddities of all time makes it's way as a fully licensed reissue, full of soulful grooves, heart-warming harmonies and smooth, funk power. An absolutely essential pick-up this one. Get it while you still can.

          Love for Atmosfear was born out of the underground UK dance scene of the early 1980s; from nightclubs, pirate radio shows and soul weekenders. A localised scene that went on to have a global influence.

          The band’s most notable track ‘Dancing in Outer Space’ - included here on the CD version as a bonus - is a certified classic. It was a chart hit in the UK and was also championed Stateside in clubs such as the mythic ‘Paradise Garage’ and ‘The Loft’ by the likes of Larry Levan and David Mancuso. An instantly recognisable anthem that is just as fresh today as it was when it was first released.

          Originally released in 1981 via Elite / MCA records, ‘En Trance’ is a joyous album that arguably represents the pinnacle of the Brit-funk sound. The band consisted of bassist, and keyboardist Lester J. Batchelor, drummer Ray Johnson, guitarist Andy Sojka, saxophonist Stewart Cawthorne, singer and guitarist Tony Antonio and producer Jerry Pike. The album captures the excitement of these exceptional players demonstrating utmost originality in the studio.

          Written and produced with Ebo Taylor and originally released in 1975,  "Simigwa" is Ambolley's debut solo album. It's a legendary Ghanain album - with one of the music iconic covers ever! - that fuses Highlife, afrobeat, folk and funk.
          Ambolley grew up during the peak of Highlife in Ghana and was a key figure in its fusion with soul and funk influences from the USA. He played in many bands including Houghas Extraordinaires, Meridians Of Tema, Ghana Broadcasting Band and the Uhuru Dance Band, for which he was recruited by his friend, Ebo Taylor. The group went to Nigeria in 1973 to play with Fela at his legendary Shrine spot.
          ‘Simigwa’ was a chance for Ambolley to release his own productions and to experiment to a certain extent. A main inspiration for this album was the work of the mighty Mr. James Brown, something that is evident from the rhythm section, horns, vocal stabs and percussion breaks throughout the record.

          Super Elcados

          Togetherness Is Always A Good Venture (Tambourine Party V2)

          Official Mr Bongo reissue of this ultra-rare LP from the funk stars deluxe, ‘Super Elcados’. "Togetherness Is Always a Good Venture" is a fusion of heavyweight Nigerian funk, soul & disco, originally released by EMI Nigeria in 1976.  The ‘Super Elcados’ (and ‘Elcados’ on other recordings) recorded three albums in the mid and late-70’s, this is their first. It was followed by ‘This World Is Full Of Injustice’ and ‘What Ever You Need’. Dipping into the sunkissed grooves here you'll find hot guitar licks, fuzzy organs and bright brass, all taking turns over an irresistible Afro-funk rhythm section.

          The legendary 1972 album from Celia, arranged by Arthur Verocai with replica artwork.

          Celia Regina Cruz recorded four self-titled albums for Continental between 1971 and 1977, ‘Amor’ in 1982 plus several more before she sadly passed away late in 2017.

          Celia was a Brazilian vocalist who worked frequently with master arranger and composer Arthur Verocai in her early years and many other heavyweights over the course of her extensive career.

          This, her second self-titled LP from 1972, features an all-star line up including Arthur Verocai, Erasmo Carlos, Roberto Carlos, Marcos Valle, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Nonato Buzar and Vinicius de Moraes amongst others.

          Celia’s version of ‘Na Boca do Sol’ - taken from this album - is arguably her most well-known and well-loved song. An incredible take on Verocai’s original, featuring waling fuzz guitars, strings, piano, horns and drums. Needless to say clean, original versions of this record now change hands for silly money!


          Shina Williams & His African Percussionists

          African Dances

          First official reissue of the extremely rare full-length album by Lagos-based bandleader Shina Williams. Clean copies of the original currently sell for up to £500.

          The record was born in 1979 when Shina put Biddy Wright, Fred Fisher, Saliu Alabi, Prince Bola, Tutu Shoronmu, Tunde Willimas and several other decorated Nigerian musicians - who played with the likes of Fela Kuti, SJOB Movement, Sonny Okoson, King Bucknor amongst others - together to record. The result is ‘African Dances’, a timeless fusion of afrobeat, electronics, boogie and disco.

          Includes his most well-known song, ‘Agboju Logun’ that Williams knew was ground breaking - “I want to show the whole wide world that Africa is alive with modern musicians to reckon with anywhere,”. This album version is a different mix to the two-track 12” that came out under on Earthworks, Rough Trade in 1984.

          Luis Perez

          Ipan In Xiktli Metztli

            Official Mr Bongo reissue. Replica original artwork, including the insert with listening instructions, in Spanish and English.

            Luis Perez was born in Mexico City on July 11, 1951. From 1971 onwards he dedicated much of his time to the research of pre-Columbian instrumentation. This research that allowed him to travel the Mexican territory and study musical traditions of the native peoples of Mexico.

            He learned directly from the living sources of the music and collected samples of musical instruments and the songs of different native speakers including Maya, Nahuatl, Mazateco, Yoemem, Comcaac, Raramuri, Wixarika and more. His personal collection of native Mexican instruments includes ethnographic instruments still in use by ethnic groups, along with archaeological artifacts some of which are more than 2,000 years old.

            He continuously utilises these instruments in performances, concerts, lectures, exhibitions and recordings, in a sense, keeping them alive. Following a decade playing in Mexico City’s psychedelic rock scene, his early solo work was a mixture of sounds derived from his vast array of pre-Hispanic and ethnographic wind and percussions which he managed to blend with electronic devices including tape delay units, electric guitars and synthesisers. During this time, he was given the name ‘Ixoneztli’ (or “one who makes music”) by the legendary ‘curandera’ Pachita and her son Enrique, to whom, like Alejandro Jodorowsky before him, Luis served as assistant. In 1981, the Mexican government became very interested Perez work and sponsored the production of what became the first recording of the fusion of native mexican instruments with electronics - entitled ‘Ipan In Xiktli Metztli,’ in the Nahuatl language, or ‘En el Ombligo de la Luna’ in Spanish... ‘In the Navel of the Moon.’

            The impact of this recording and subsequent performances among media, ethnomusicologists and audiences alike established Luis Perez ‘Ixoneztli’ as a precursor to a new musical genre followed by a generation of young Mexican musicians - Ethno-Rock, Ethno-Jazz, Ethno-Experimental and the like. ‘El Ombligo de la Luna’ reaches us from deep in the past but it also exists entirely outside of time, as Luis Perez ‘Ixoneztli’’s offering to the world - the soul of Mexico channeled through the hands of a master musician.

            Pat Thomas

            Pat Thomas Introduces Marajita

              THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2018 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

               Replica original artwork, official Mr Bongo reissue.

              Cymande

              Second Time Round (RSD18 EDITION)

                UK funk outfit Cymande followed their eponymous debut LP with "Second Time Round", also from 1973. Fusing musical influences such as soul, Afro-beat, reggae and calypso, they created a unique British funk sound that became a favourite sample source for hip hop producers in the next two decades. This LP includes the classic "Fug" and single / album opener "Anthracite" - a title only a UK outfit would ever call a track!

                Ghanaian music legend Ebo Taylor returns with perhaps his finest album to date. But don’t take our word for it. That’s coming straight from the man himself, and he should know after more than 60 years in the business!
                The 81-year-old composer, arranger, guitarist and vocalist has been a key figure in the evolving afro-funk sound since the Seventies, working with the likes of Apagya Show Band, CK Mann and Pat Thomas. Famously, he rubbed shoulders with Fela Kuti while studying in London in the Sixties, before going on to lead the Ghana Black Star Band (featuring Osei and Sol Amarfio from Osibisa) and later the Uhuru Dance Band back in Ghana.
                Like Fela, he is always pushing forward, constantly reconceptualising his sound and attuning it for a new generation. Part teacher, part messenger, listen to "Yen Ara" and you will not only hear the high-energy afrobeat, sweet highlife, jazz and konkoma influences that he’s famous for, but also a disco pulse and hard-hitting percussive edge to the tracks, which were produced by Justin Adams (Tinariwen, Rachid Taha, Robert Plant) and recorded in the live room at Electric Monkey Studio in Amsterdam.
                His group, the Saltpond City Band, are all handpicked local musicians featuring two of his sons. An appropriate line-up on an album whose titles means “we”. And they are on fine form, ripping through tracks such as ‘Krumandey’ (a surefire party starter) and ‘Mind Your Own Business’ (a simple message delivered over a frenetic drum rhythm).
                Elsewhere, ‘Aboa Kyirbin’ will please fans of tough afrobeat grooves, while Taylor could well be inciting a riot at his next gig with ‘Mumudey Mumudey’, We hear him calling for ‘preshaaah’ and leading us into a call and response as the trumpet takes us higher. And the lift of those horns on ‘Ankoma’m’ evokes some of his finest work such as ‘Love & Death’ and ‘Come Along’, the latter recorded with the Pelikans and featured on a recent Mr Bongo reissue.

                Mr Bongo keep the hits coming with a welcome reissue of Burnier & Cartier's self-titled LP, which has soared to the top of many a wantlist after appearing in many a setlist and sample-jam. A gorgeous set which touches on MPB, soul, jazz, disco and boogie, the LP has been championed by the likes of Jazzanova, Floating Points and Hunnee while Andres and KDJ and Kaytranada have all slammed it into the MPC and made good use of these exquisiste grooves. The perfect marriage of breezy South American rhythms, sunkissed melodies and smooth vocals, the album is a testament to the songwriting talents of the duo and the production and arrangement expertise of Arthur Verocai and Luis Bonfa.
                Remastered for 2018 and presented in replica artwork, this Brazilian fusion gem is finally available without securing a second mortgage.

                Latin LSD maverick and champion, Tim Maia returns to our shelves as Mr. Bongo dig deep into this funky tripper's arsenal to reveal an album of wide-eyed disco and riotous soul from later on in his career. That original batch of sunshine still resting in the recesses and pineal glands as the Maia clan deliver this excessive hit of Brazian disco funk from 1978,

                The album kicks off with a trio of floor fillers: the exuberant party starter "A Fim De Voltar", a sing-a-long anthem in "Acenda O Farol" and the undeniably funky hit "Sossego" (file that one next to Fatback). But then Maia drops it down and gets existential on "All I Want", questioning the meaning of happiness. He also shows his tender side on slow burners such as "Murm Rio" (written by the great Cassiano) and "Pais E Filhos"; the latter featuring a supersoft bed of harmonies you can’t help but lay down on. But the party ain’t over and mid-tempo groover "Juras" gets the feet moving again before "Jhony" sends us swaying off into the night.

                Maia’s appetite for excess would eventually get the better of him. But "Disco Club" is the sound of an unpredictable genius on top form. Get ready for the time of your life.

                Various Artists

                The Original Sound Of Burkina Faso

                  ‘The Original Sound of Burkina Faso’ follows the hugely successful ‘The Original Sound of Mali’ compilation released in March this year, also on Mr Bongo. Here we have a collection of songs that pay tribute to a truly golden age of music; touching on folk, funk, blues, highlife, disco, psyche, latin, rock and soul.

                  Burkina Faso may be one of the least well-known parts of West Africa but it has a deep history and musical pedigree. A few years before President Thomas Sankara changed his country’s name from Upper Volta to its current one, a new sound emerged to soundtrack a cultural revolution. Featuring music by Abdoulaye Cisse, Amadou Balake, Pierre Sandwidi & Super Volta, Tidiani Coulibaly & Dafra Star, Bozambo, Youssouf Diarra and more.

                  ‘Spirit Reflection’ is the third album LP from Los Angeles singer-songwriter Gaby Hernandez. Blissful layers of instrumentation, electronics, vocal harmonies and folkloric percussion intertwine with west coast feel to create a unique, beautiful and multi-layered album.

                  The album features a stellar line-up of LA talent; jazz star Kamasi Washington, Stuart Howard (AKA Lapalux), Kelis and Gaslamp killer collaborator Dexter Story, plus Ninja Tune, Plug Research and Soul Jazz artist Carlos Nin 771;o, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Gabriel Reyes-Whittaker all accompany Gaby, with stunning results.

                  Even before Spirit Reflection had been finished, the demo mixes caught the ear and gained support from Gilles Peterson, Lefto, Toshio Matsuura (U.F.O.) and J- Rocc (Beat Junkies). Born, raised and based in Los Angeles and of Chilean descent, Gaby Hernandez has been writing and recording since 2001. She was a founding member of the ‘creative music ensemble’ Build An Ark alongside others including Carlos Nin 771;o, Dexter Story and Dwight Trible.

                  Gaby was the only vocalist on Teebs' debut Brainfeeder release Ardour. She made major contributions to AmmonContact's Ninja Tune releases New Birth and With Voices, plus The Life Force Trio's Plug Research album Living Room. She was also the vocalist on Dimlite's Outernational Duet - released as part of his highly acclaimed Sonar Kollektiv longplayer This Is Embracing.

                  David and Graham from Mr Bongo met Gaby and Carlos Nino at the end of their hugely successful Arthur Verocai album launch and rare record sale at the RAPPCATS venue in LA. “Gaby and Carlos passed us a copy of ‘Spirit Reflection’. and we put it on the deck. It immediately grabbed us and we couldn’t stop listening to it. When we got back to the UK we got in contact straight away and signed the album. We’re very proud to be releasing it”... “...this is a future classic, an 'album' in the truest sense of the word. Brilliant.” says Graham.

                  “The music itself envelopes its listener in a warmth reminiscent of decades past, presenting both a nostalgic soulful sound and a sensual experience” Culture Collide

                  “A romantic summer cocktail that should be imbibed half-nude on a beach or while scattering rose petals on a bed. The songs flow between seductive, relaxing and spiritually nurturing, with earthy rhythms and warm production that make the listener feel comforted” Buzz Bands LA

                  “Jaw-droppingly tasty” LA Weekly

                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Millie says: Shades of Mia Doi Todd abound on this delicate and drifting journey through hook heavy, hazy soul. This is the soundtrack to the summer everyone.

                  Arthur Verocai

                  Arthur Verocai - RSD Edition

                    THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2017 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                    RSD 2017 REISSUE – Half-speed mastered at Abbey Road by Miles Showell, limited to 1000 copies only.

                    This half-speed, deluxe edition released for RSD 2017 features unseen photography from the recording session. The audio source is the Continental tapes, mastered at half-speed by the legendary Miles Showell at Abbey Road in London – the most stunning reproduction ever made, accentuating the details and nuances that appear throughout this masterpiece.

                    Originally recorded at Studio Somil, Rio De Janeiro in 1972, the album was produced, arranged, directed by the self-taught, Arthur Verocai. The 29 minute masterpiece, perfect in it's arrangement and fusion of sonics, epitomises the sound of Brazil at the time; strings, guitars, pianos, break beats, basslines, synthesizers, vocals from the wonderful Celia and percussion from Pedro Santos. Bossa nova, samba, jazz, MPB, psychedelics and funk sit side by side effortlessly.

                    Pat Thomas

                    Marijata

                      THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2017 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                      Limited to 1000 copies, released for RSD 2017. Replica original artwork on this highly sought after driving African funk re-issue. 180g vinyl with Japanese paste-one sleeve.

                      Marijata was a group made up of three members – Kofi 'Electric' Addison on drums, Bob Fischlan on organ and Nat Osmanu on guitar, hailing from Ghana. 'This Is Marijata' is the groups first LP; released originally on the Gapophone label – it is pure, rootsy, raw, driving African funk music of the highest order, now highly sought-after in both its original and previously reissued forms.

                      Addison, Osmanu and Fischlan formed a band called the Sweet Beans with a young singer and guitarist, namely the legendary Pat Thomas. They released 'False Lover' in 1974 on Gapophone Records before recording 'This Is Marijata' and then 'Pat Thomas Introduces Marijata' shortly afterwards.

                      Malian music is arguably the most sophisticated form of African music. Now Mr Bongo, who have long been entranced by Malian culture, and, in particular, the immense hypnotic beauty of Malian music, have put together a selection of songs from across the country. Compiled by Vik Sohonie & Dave ‘Mr Bongo’ Buttle, the story of this release began in 2015 when Dave happened upon the Soul Bonanza blog. One mix in particular stood out and totally enthralled Dave - le monde a change: a tribute to mali 1970 - 1991. He already knew of Malian legends such as the Rail Band, Salif Keita, & Les Ambassadeurs du Motel de Bamako, but this mix was something else. On this album you will find well-known artists sing next to rarer discoveries. The Rail Band, who are one of the best known of all the big bands in Mali, gave us the stars Mory Kante and Salif Keita. Les Amabassedeurs du Motel de Bamako were another big act that had Idrissa Soumaoro, Kante, Man la, and for a while Salif Keita in their ranks. Sometimes Salif would play in both bands in one night, quite a feat considering the bands were fierce rivals. Asan albino Salif has had to face considerable prejudice from society, focusing on his musical career to help overcome this. A major discovery on the album has been Idrissa Soumaoro et L’Eclipse de L’Ija. L’Eclipse de l’Institut des Jeunes Aveugles was a Blind teenagers institute and their record was produced by the German association that took care of blind Malian teenagers in Bamako. It was never properly released commercially and was the first recordings by the legends of Malian music Idrissa Soumaoro, Amadou Bagayoko and Mariam Doumbia. Amadou & Mariam later got married and became household names. This album is a concerted global effort to showcase the most vital cornerstone of Malian culture in an attempt to preserve its reputation in the face of its current, grim reality. We hope our highlights of Mali’s rich history of musical innovation will serve as a starting point for reclaiming an image tainted by unnecessary conflict. May peace and music return to Mali soon.

                      "Krishnanda" is an album in the truest sense of the word – a spiritual, psychedelic Brazilian masterpiece from start to finish – celebrated by everyone from Seu Jorge and Kassin to Floating Points, Madlib and DJ Nuts. These days, originals change hands for thousands of squids, so it's about time that this classic was lovingly re-issued with heavy sleeve and on heavy weight vinyl. Pedro dos Santos, born in Rio in 1919, was a percussionist virtuoso, composer and inventor of instruments that apparently included oddities such as the "Tamba" (electrified bamboo drum) and the mouth berimbau whistle. He was given the nickname Pedro 'Sorongo' after the rhythm he invented, and as the music takes hold, you'll hear that trademark sway throughout 'Krishnanda'. In the same vein as Verocai and his self-titled LP, "Krishnanda" was Pedro's chance to shine with his own, and only, solo recording, and the Brazilian grabbed the opportunity with both hands. Musically, the album touches folk, samba, Afro-Brazilian and psychedelia, while lyrically we hear a depth and diversity to match the spread of the sounds; themes including morality, perception, existence and ego all enter into Pedro's musical world. Despite the genius of the record and the influence that it had on musicians at the time of release, it disappeared into obscurity. Mr Bongo first discovered the record around 2003, through their friend Julio Dui. Around that time Brazilian funk and bossa was the flavour of the day, so didn't catch our ear immediately, however it continued improve with age and now they consider it to be one of the best albums ever made, regardless of genre or origin.


                      STAFF COMMENTS

                      Patrick says: A true holy grail of Brazilian music sees the light of day again thanks to Mr Bongo. Psychedelic, spiritual and totally unique, "Krishnada" leaves all genre confines behind on its kaleidoscopic journey into Pedro's musical vision.

                      "The first instalment in our new 'Mr Bongo Record Club' compilation series – a selection of favourites, recent discoveries and sought after obscurities, which form the basis of our DJ sets and our radio show of the same name. Including cuts by Claudia, Cortex, Dave Pike Set, Fruko, Neno Exporta Som, Connie Laverne, Barbosa and more.

                      The original concept for 'Mr Bongo Record Club' was a radio show that allowed us to air our treasured record collections, recorded and broadcast once a month. We wanted to create an outlet free from any genre or BPM restrictions, not constrained by the need to beat-mix every record, a space where we could play latest finds alongside favourites. The only self-imposed rule being that it had to be played from vinyl.

                      We have always DJ'd across-the-board, but playing in an eclectic way hasn't always been easy. Recently DJ's such as MCDE, Floating Points, Nick The Record, Leon Vynehall, Four Tet, Jeremy Underground, Antal (Rush Hour), Sassy J and Young Marco – to name a few – have opened things up with very diverse sets to younger audiences; Brazilian samba-rock, next to modern soul, highlife, disco, boogie, jazz, house, techno and beyond.
                      We're seeing a rare groove like sensibility. A shift towards the attitude of legendary club nights hosted by the likes of Mr Scruff and Gilles Peterson, where you could hear house, hip hop, Turkish funk, boogie, jazz, dub and Latin back to back. At the same time it isn't a nostalgic or retro movement, people have a progressive attitude and a thirst for new-old music. It is a vibrant and exciting time – we are proud to be a part of it." - Mr Bongo

                      STAFF COMMENTS

                      Patrick says: Even the most cursory glance over this stunning setlist should have you reaching for your wallet. Bringing together classics, rare digs and pound shop finds from their long running radio show and DJ sets, those cats from Mr Bongo career through jazz rock, library funk, highlife, disco and latin without ever missing a trick. Essential!

                      Eloah

                      Os Orixas

                      Tip off from our good friend Rodrigo Gorky aka Bonde do Role, that has since become one of our favourite album discoveries, and continues to grow on us with every spin.

                      ‘Os Orixas’ is rich in layered percussion, horns and guitars. Singer Eloah’s lead vocals are reminiscent of the likes of Ellen McIlwaine, Elza Soares and Joyce. Samba, funk, folk, jazz and MPB over ijexa and African grooves, that combine beautifully across the moods. Os Orixas refers to one of the manifestations of the ’supreme God’ in the Yoruba faith.

                      The songs were written by Luis Berimbau, assisted by Ildásio Tavares. Berimbau was a very influential multi instrumentalist, poet, writer and composer from Bahia, Brazil. He produced the wonderful folk / psychedelic rock group Perfume Azul Do Sol’s ‘Nascimento’ LP amongst many others.

                      Tavares was an author, composer and poet from Salvador, Bahia. As a composer, he worked with many artists including Vinicius de Moraes, Maria Bethania, Alcyone, Toquinho, Nelson Gonçalves and Maria Creuza. Many of his poetic works were published, and he even penned Afro-Brazilian opera entitled ‘Lydia's Oshun’.

                      Arthur Verocai

                      Arthur Verocai - Mr Bongo Edition

                      Recorded at Studio Somil, Rio De Janeiro in 1972, the album was produced, arranged, directed by the self-taught, Arthur Verocai. Previously he had worked on many records in various capacities, with artists including Jorge Ben, Ivan Lins and Celia, this album gave him the chance to do his thing in it's most pure form. The LP has an orchestral folk-soul, jazz, funk or lo-fi electronic experimentation feel, in a similar vein to Shuggie Otis, Charles Stepney (the LP uses 20 piece string arrangements) or Jorge Ben, with lyrics (sung in Portuguese) that subtly challenge the repressive military dictatorship of the time. Featured musicians include Robertinho Silva, Paulo Moura, Edson Maciel, Oberdan Magalhaes (Banda Black Rio) and Tonhino Horta.  For a very long time, Mr Bongo have been trying to re-issue this record. A true and complete album masterpiece in every sense of the word, considered by many people to be one of the greatest ever made, regardless of genre.  Mastered in 2012 from the original Continental master tapes and supervised by Arthur Verocai, the album comes complete with original replica gatefold artwork.

                      Incredible Bongo Band

                      Incredible Bongo Band - 5 X 7" Box Set RSD 2016 Exclusive

                        THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2016 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

                        5 x 7" singles in Incredible Bongo Band branded sleeves, in a unique, beautiful mirrored box with an exclusive 8-page insert featuring photographs and the history of the band.

                        Formed by MGM A&R man Michael Viner in 1972 to supplement the soundtrack to the virtually anonymous B-Movie film The Thing With Two Heads, "The IBB" went from a loose studio collective to an instrumental pop covers consortium, interpreting classics of the day in their own inimitable percussive fashion. B-Movie soundtracks, The Beatles, drummers gone bad, Frank Zappa, Kool Herc... These albums have a remarkable story behind them which is detailed in the exclusive insert included in the boxset, written by Angus Batey.

                        Apache has been sampled by Missy Elliot, Coldcut, Will Smith, Goldie, Jurassic 5, Moby, Run DMC, Sugarhill Gang, Beastie Boys and Massive Attack among many others.

                        'Dawn Of The Dread' brings the big personality that is Horseman to the forefront of a full length album for the first time. As fearsome a drummer as he is an MC, Horseman has worked with musicians and producers Tippa Irie, Max Romeo, Gregory Isaacs, Sugar Minott, Jah Shaka, Mad Professor, Barrington Levy, Eek-A-Mouse and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with John Holt - to name but a few - most recently performing with Hollie Cook and Prince Fatty. It was while playing with renowned outfit The Ruff Cut Band he met producer and long term colaborater Mike 'Prince Fatty' Pelanconi. 'Dawn Of The Dread' was recorded at Studio Dub in Thailand before being mixed at Prince Fatty's Ironworks studio in Brighton. "Mike just asked, "you ever been to Thailand?" and we went. There were great vibes, we walked in and it all fell into place. We were looking to get that 80s digital sound and all that original equipment was just there waiting for us. It was fate".

                        The album is the follow-up to her fantastic eponymous debut album which was released to huge acclaim in 2011, with Q calling it "gorgeous late '70's style reggae pop" whilst the BBC named it as "one of the most enjoyable reggae albums of 2011". In 2012 a dub version of the debut album was released – "Prince Fatty Presents Hollie Cook In Dub". That same year Ian Brown asked Hollie to support The Stone Roses on one of their hugely anticipated reunion shows at Manchester's Heaton Park.

                        The new album "Twice" sees Hollie's obvious love of reggae joined by other influences including Bond-like strings, Brazilian percussion, dark disco and shades of Giorgio Moroder. She is joined on the album by Dennis Bovell, Omar, George Dekker and Winston Francis. The strings on the album are the Macedonian Radio Symphonic Orchestra and Choir. The album was produced by Prince Fatty.

                        Prince Fatty Meets The Mutant Hifi

                        Transistor Cowboy / Son Of A Thousand Fathers

                        Prince Fatty Meets The Mutant Hifi in 'Return of Gringo!' is the fevered and frontal lobe-damaged brainchild of Nick Coplowe (The Mutant Hifi) and Mike Pelanconi (Prince Fatty), the result of years of plotting, planning, laughing and procrastinating. Put simply, it is a surf/ska/spaghetti western soundtrack album for a film that is yet to be made. Think Dick Dale jamming with the Skatalites with Morricone at the helm, including appearances from Alessandro Alessandroni (the original spaghetti western whistler) and you're in the right section at the record store, although it is possibly a very small section.

                        It's a quick draw shootout in a Mexican standoff, pitting hard hitting ska against ripping surf riffs and outlaw bandito brass, the cold anarchic freedom of the wild west seen through a lomographic lens where the hot sun and scorching sand make sure that only the toughest survive, leaving their enemies to the flies, the prairie dogs and the vultures. It is the son of a thousand fathers, every one of them a bastard. Every gun sings it's own tune.


                        Like many American stories, the tale of Fania comes from the boroughs and inner city barrios of New York City. Along the way, Fania artists mixed a cornucopia of styles that transcended the boundaries of traditional Latin music and set the path for the genres of salsa, boogaloo, Latin R&B, and Afro-Cuban jazz. This set brings the Fania sound right up to date with an excellent selection of contemporary remixes. Radio 1 DJ, Brownswood Records label boss and all-round music guru Gilles Peterson offers up a great mix of Nora Morales' "Saona", alongside Ashley Beedle, who touches up "Feel Like Making Love" by Ricardo Marrerro. Brazil's electronic trio of the moment, funk carioca outfit Bonde de Role take on Lenni Sesar's "Morris Park", while Sinden revamps La Lupe's version of "Fever". Hip hop pioneer DJ Format brings us a storming mix of Dave Cortez' "Happy Soul With A Hook", while Masters at Work's Louie Vega drops an 11 minute rework of Hector Lavoe's "Mi Gente". Add to that remixes by 4hero, Bugz In the Attic, Nicola Conte, Quantic, Andy Smith and Keith Lawrence, and I reckon we have a pretty essential LP.

                        FORMAT INFORMATION

                        2xCD Info: 28 track double CD.


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