Aura’s African boogie funk: the ‘Spiritual Connection’ grail LP is finally reissued by Afrodesia

Ignore this reissue at your peril – as Aura are on fire on their album Spiritual Connection, originally recorded for Afrodesia in Nigeria.

The relatively short lived ‘Aura’ project was spiritually guided by Zee-Tei Debekeme in 1976. The band consisted of the keys of Issac Moore, Omega Garbal on guitar, Casco Mayor on percussion, Afrodisia regular Benna Kemfa (who also was in Ofo Black Company), and Candido Obajimi (Afrika 70 and Tony Allen) provided vocals, beats and drums.

Back in 1976 the LP never received a full release and this repress comes from the only known copy in existence from the Afrodisia masters vault.It’s insane to think that this is only getting its full release 32 years later.

The album itself is a melting pot of African 1970s, dirty funk, wailing synthesisers and chanting, as if it were a live jam throughout.

Aura (Spiritual Emanation) – Spiritual Connection is out now.

Kingsley Bucknor reissue ‘Just U And Me’ finishes year in style for Left Ear Records

This one has been on heavy rotation – Kingsley Bucknor’s Just U and Me LP, from Nigeria, in 1985.

The Aussie label moves further afield and has has selected this trippy electro-funk and boogie fusion to finish 2017. After playing with Fela Kuti in the 1970s and releasing two afrobeat LP’s, Kingsley travelled the globe. In London he laid down six distinctive electro-funk tunes inspired by music he’d heard in the States and Europe and was originally released on Kingsley’s own KAB records.

Honest Jon’s newest talent is Obadikah

Fantastic new release on Honest Jon’s Records – the Obadikah brass band from Lagos, Nigeria. From what I can gather. Obadikah were previously known as Awamaridi Brass Band and the video shows them performing in 2014.

Obadikah is a group of old friends who play together in the Baptist churches of the Ikeja and Isale Eko districts. Some of the group are founder-members of the Eko Brass Band. They play mostly traditional Yoruban melodies.

obadikahMore at Honest Jon’s.

Wake Up! new Nigerian rock comp on Now Again

Great music and images plus a captivating read for all Afro musos.

WAKEUP-VOL2-LP-coverThis double compilation from Now Again is a key addition to their catalogue. Despite numerous Nigeria compilations – the Soundway and Strut ones being some of the very best – these releases comprehensively document the historical context and situation in the country at the time, as well as the distinctive rock sound.

Wake Up You! The Rise and Fall of Nigerian Rock is out now and comes in the form of two very smart books and volumes on CD or a deluxe LP. There’s lots to read with them and there won’t be more from WTM about the contents at this very moment. More coverage coming up though. Watch this space.

WAKEUP-VOL1-LP-coverCheck out a full audio tour of both volumes below:

Onyeabor interview: exclusive interview for BBC Radio

So elusive, so important to hear from him – even news of fresh material. However, the pre-amble with Lauren Laverne (BBC Six presenter) seems to suggest that most of the interview was fairly abstract, limited in duration, as well as fairly crackly. It’s a shame, but continues to add to the enigmatic quality of the artist and is very much in keeping with the marketing and promotion of Onyeabor by David Byrne’s fantastic (otherwise) label. Would be so good to hear more from this man.

In relation to new material, the gospel channel supposedly hosting a new song from Onyeabor can be found on YouTube. However, links to the specific song have been disabled. Rumours are abound online discussing the song, but how long was this song hosted for? Has Onyeabor fed his fans a red herring to attract them to this channel? He is now a man of God after all and gave a brief religious message at the end of the 30 minute Luaka Bop documentary released in 2014. In that, Onyeabor appeared briefly (literally a few seconds) and played a recorded message. The figure presenting the recording was purported to be Onyeabor, but viewers never heard him speak directly or got a good look at him. Together with this brief interview, It only adds further to the mystery! To see and hear a flavour of gospel from Nigeria click  for WT’s West Africa page here.

Probably only around for a limited time, to listen to Onyeabor on the phone: Click here