Heita-da! This is AFROSYNTH, the realest African selection...
This month we bring you more forgotten classics by the likes of SOWETO YOUTH BAND, Q, TAILS OUT, NOVIDADE and SUN. Before that we had NEVILLE NASH, ZIZI KONGO, MAKHWERU, BENJAMIN BALL and SOUND PROOF.
To purchase still-sealed copies of these and other albums, email djokapi[at]gmail.com!
Fronted by vocalists William Ngobeni and Patrick Mabasa, Makwerhu (Shangaan/Tsonga for 'our brother') were pioneers of the pantsula style that bridged bubblegum and kwaito (alongside Ayobayo Band and The Hard Workers). Their 1990 album Daddy Come Back followed earlier releases Education (1987), Mapansula (1988) and Mahlalela (1989). Over highly infectious electronic grooves, lyrics touch on issues of dislocation - absent fathers ('Daddy Come Back'), missing children ('Vha Kho Shengela') and migration ('Ngwana Enwa'). Other titles include 'Brother' and 'Living with the People'.
* Mint copies of this album are for sale here.
Nash was one of the funkiest guys on the scene since the late 70s, years before the rise of bubblegum. Following softer soul/disco albums like 1980's Kind Hearted Man, his 1981 eponymously titled effort and 1982's Diamonds & Pearls and Solid Gold, he trimmed the Afro, grew the 'tache and turned up the synths for arguably his finest album, 1984's Teaser. Tracks include 'Perfect Love', 'Love On the Edge of Night', 'Break Down'. and 'One of Those Nights', which Nash famously performed live at the historic Concert in the Park in Johannesburg in 1985.
As leader of Orchestra Afrisa and great rival of Franco's TPOK Jazz, Tabu Ley Rochereau was one of Africa's greatest musicians. As a bandleader and composer he helped launch the career of Mbilia Bel, the first female soukous star, marrying her in the process. When Bel went solo he discovered the next soukous diva, Faya Tess, who features on three tracks on Face Ä Face (face to face), billed as 'Le Grand Retour' ('The Great Return') of Rochereau. Packed full of interested synths, the album reflects Rochereau's attempts to keep with the times. The title track got no fewer than two different music videos, as did the catchy duet 'Sosolinga'.