January 17, 2010

Discothek 2

This is a runner-up in the Worst Sleeve competition, and not just because of the cheap colours. Of course Polydor Kenya has a reputation to uphold in this field, with a long line of cheap looking album covers.
In this case the cheapness is aggravated by the apparent incorrectness of the information. I mean, "8 originalhits"? Do they mean over the two volumes (there is also a volume 1*)? Or are they referring to the fact that these tracks were originally released as singles with part one on side A and part two on B (and I am not suggesting this was the case)?

Luckily the exterior lack of quality is generously compensated by the quality of the musical offerings. Four top tracks by top artists, from East ánd Central Africa. All tracks are in that rich, guitar-based East African 'rumba' style, - but this doesn't mean that there is no variety.
The album opens with "Mwenda Pole", a laid-back classic by Wilson Peter and Simba Wanyika. By contrast the second track, "Mabibi Za Watu" by the great Moreno Matamba and Moja One is nervous and charged with a dramatic tension.

Side two opens with Sam Mangwana, who although singing in swahili manages to remain one hundred percent himself: a master entertainer. My guess is that "Furaha Ya Bibi" was recorded in the same session as "Masai" on "Kweya" (which was released in the same year).
The album is rounded off by a song by Laban Ochuka and the Maroon Commandos. Their "Naenda Safari" has a determined pace befitting a band with military roots.

This album offers more proof that you shouldn't judge a record by its sleeve....

Polydor POLP 547

*which in my opinion is not as good as this second volume. But, if you like, I will post this later.

14 comments:

Peter said...

Wilson Peter and Super Wanyika? It's Simba Wanyika, not Super Wanyika.

WrldServ said...

@Peter: corrected.

WrldServ said...

By the way: what happened to your blog?

Anonymous said...

Yes a chear cover, but good music from not well known artists-except
Sam Mangwana.
Please post when you want and the vol.1 to have them together...
Many, many thanks.
Kostas from Greece.

Rider said...

Great stuff WrldServ, the musicians (apart from Mangwana as earlier stated) may not be so popular outside East Africa, but they are legends in East Africa. The general message of the tracks are:

1) Hurry hurry has no blessing (Kinyonga)

2)Moreno's song is admonishing some fella to keep off other people's women.

3) Mangwana's song basically says that the joy of the husband is in having a wife and vice versa.

4) Laban Ochuka's song is from a a man to his sweetheart telling her he is setting off for a journey and she should wait for him....

These are gems that you have unearthed and I have been searching for the first song for quite some time, Thanks.

Rider said...

Do you have any music by vijana or Nuta jazz band (both from Tanzania)?

WrldServ said...

@Rider: Thanks for this insight into the lyrical content of the songs!

Both Vijana and NUTA Jazz are in line to be posted.
Do you happen to have a photo of NUTA Jazz, by any chance? I have a great cassette, but no picture to go with it....

Peter said...

What happened to my blog? Not much, but last Xmas I posted the Momi LP "Joyeux Noel" (featuring Ntesa & Josky).

For pics of Nuta Jazz, see booklet of "Ujamaa" CD (Zanzibara 3).

johan said...

thanks a lot. I had this record years ago but i lost it. it's really a great record. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Really nice album, please post volume 1, thanks.

Drifter said...

Hello WrldServ, if it can help, you can find a Nuta Jazz photo on T.P. Africa Blog here : http://tpafrica-eng.blogspot.com/2009/12/shikamoo-jazz-chela-chela-vol-1.html

Peter said...

RE: http://tpafrica-eng.blogspot.com/2009/12/shikamoo-jazz-chela-chela-vol-1.html - that's not a pic of Nuta Jazz but of Slim Ali & the Hodi Boys.

Drifter said...

Peter...

Now you tell this it's easy to recognize Ali Slim. Thank you for having corrected me. Sorry

Anonymous said...

when he published "It's My Discothek Vol 1"?