ghana s dj katapila is back with more minimalist dance music productions, this time inspired in part by his travels overseas. following the success of the re-release of his trotro recording a couple years ago, katapila has been playing in europe and the uk, bringing his style of breakneck-paced, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink west african club music into a very different conte, giving katapila (real name ishmael abbey) inspiration in the kind of music he has heard in places like london. so he made some new music, here we go!
awa poulo is a singer of peulh origin from dilly commune, mali, near the border with mauritania. largely pastoral and often nomadic, peulh- (or fula-) speaking peoples are found from senegal to ethiopia but predominate in the sahel region of west africa.
the vinyl lp includes a download code.
the two previously-unreleased tracks build on katapila s international oeuvre significantly, painting a broader picture of what the iconoclastic road warrior dj-producer has been doing the past few years: making his own kind of electronic music that s both deeply personal and wildly international. the multi-layered vocal madness on the original mix of katapilas song trotro gives way to the previously-unreleased kotulo. check!
south africa. cult favorite among collectors. follows the successful reissue of “bafana bafana” last year. professor rhythm’s 1991 recording professor 3 is a vivid reflection of urban south africa as apartheid was ending
new music by hailu mergia, featuring tony buck (drums) and mike majkowski (upright bass). the culmination of mergias remarkable worldwide tours over the past few years, these new recordings celebrate an evolving, youthful soul. lala belu completes a realistic portrait of hailu mergia
professor rhythm is the production moniker of south african music man thami mdluli. throughout the 1980’s, mdluli was member of chart-topping groups taboo and cjb, playing bubblegum pop to stadiums. mdluli became an in-demand producer for influential artists (like sox and sensations, among many others) and in-house producer for important record companies like eric frisch and tusk. during the early ’80s, mdluli projects usually featured an instrumental dance track. these hot instrumentals became rather popular. fans demanded to hear more of these backing tracks without vocals, he says, so mdluli began to make solo instrumental albums in 1985 as professor rhythm. he got the name before the recordings began, from fans, and positive momentum from audiences and other musicians drove him to invest himself in a full-on solo project. it was the era just before the end of apartheid and house music hadn’t taken over yet. there wasn’t instrumental electronic music yet in south africa. as the ’80s came to a close, that was about to change.
say you love me wasn’t “om” alec khaoli’s first solo recording but the 1985 ep solidified the bass player and songwriter’s standing as one of south africa’s most consistently innovative pop auteurs. he built a career on ubiquitous rock, pop and soul hits with groundbreaking bands like the beaters, harari and umoja. but khaoli’s seemingly endless fountain of music continued outside these ensembles, where he usually played bass and contributed songwriting and vocals.
at the age of 28, awalom gebremariam arrived in the united states, following a years-long journey from eritrea. he’d made it to a refugee camp in ethiopia several years ago and eventually attained asylum status for passage to america. but before he left his hometown, eritrea’s capital asmara, he made his first and only recording so far, desdes.
the double vinyl release includes a download code.