Review: Thanks to increased interest in South African dance music of the late 1980s, original copies of this obscure album from little-known trio The Bees have been changing hands for large sums online. Happily, Johannesburg-based label Afrosynth Records has decided to give it the reissue treatment. It was first released in 1988 and offers a near perfect example of the early Kwaito style blend of "bubblegum" South African synth-pop and contemporaneous U.S house. Highlights include the chanted vocals, sun-bright synth melodies and rubbery bass of "She's A Witch (Tikoloshi)", the glassy-eyed mid-tempo Kwaito richness of "Mjondolo (Bus House)" and "Mathatha", an anthem in waiting rich in country guitar riffs, positive lyrical messages and jangling house piano.
Review: Kalita are honoured to release the first ever compilation focusing on the musical career of Julie Coker, the queen of Nigerian television. Here we collate seven of Julie's most sought-after Afro disco and hauntingly-beautiful Itsekiri highlife recordings, accompanied by extensive interview-based liner notes and never-before- seen photos.
After gaining fame as Miss Western Nigeria 1957, Julie began her career in the Nigerian entertainment industry as the country's first ever (and Africa's second) female television presenter, as well as a popular national radio host.
In 1976, having been surrounded by close musical friends including Fela Kuti and Kris Okotie, Julie entered the Nigerian music scene with the now-invisible psychedelic highlife album 'Ere Yon (Sweet Songs)', followed in 1981 by the highly sought-after disco-centric 'Tomorrow' to great acclaim. Both now fetch eye-watering prices on the rare occasion that they become available for sale.
Here we select four recordings from 'Ere Yon (Sweet Songs)' and three from 'Tomorrow', all as contemporary-sounding today as they were when first released forty years ago. These include Julie's 'Ere Yon', which was recently re-interpreted by Anderson Paak on his latest album 'Oxnard' released on Dr. Dre's Aftermath imprint, and the lost Afro disco classic 'Gossiper Scandal Monger'.
In partnership with Julie, we now believe the time is right to share Julie's phenomenal story and music with the world once more.
Review: Another fine deep spiritual Jazz reissue on Japanese label P-Vine that came out on Strata East originally in 1974. Soaring vocals are charismatic of this album and it features the track Optimystical which Andres previously sampled.
Review: Musical blog and house party "Craft Music" from Saint Petersburg launches a new label.
For the first release they've invited talented musician Funkyjaws from Grodno. His music has been releaseed by labels such as Kolour LTD, Shadeleaf Music, Pusic (Austria) and others.