A record in the wrong sleeve Ive just discovered. It's not by Apola King Idowu after all but Sir Victor Uwaifo who comes from Nigeria. Some splendid Afrobeat from 1975. Amazing claims on his website-
"RESEARCH AND DISCOVERIES: Sir Victor Uwaifo, a research scholar, discovered the structural rightness in sculpture that stands without a supporting base. Most of the works which adorn the Revelation Tourist Centre in Benin City were done personally by him. Sir Victor Uwaifo designed and constructed a functional sculpture of Aeroplane House, now the largest man – made sculpture in Africa and second to the Tower of Liberty in New York, USA. Victor Uwaifo stands out tall as the first artisit in igeria to sculpt a motorized giant kinetic sculpture also the first in Nigeira “The Dancing Chief” in form to Oba Akwnzua II Cultural Complex, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.
SPECIAL INVENTIONS: The maestro not only plays the guitar with his fingers which is normal, but also with his jaw, his toes, his teeth, from behind his neck and back which are unusual, then, he spins the guitar 360 degrees suspending in the air with amazing speed faster than sound in a phenomenon.
He invented the double-neck guitar with 18 strings fashioned after the Mammy-water esoteric encounter in 1967 while looking for inspiration during a late night outing at the Barbeach, Lagos.
A VISIONARY: A man full of dreams and accomplishments, Victor Uwaifo is the founder of the Revelation Tourist Center which stands as the key to the historical events, horrors tragedies, the Good, the Bad, the Ugly and the Beautiful.
OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENTS: Sir Victor Uwaifo 50 years of music and stage performance was celebrated by N.T.A. with a golden jubilee award and broadcast live to the world in 2006.
Victor Uwaifo, the Living Legend, twanging of the guitar in quick successions, the up-and-down strokes by hand on the strings have exceeded 5 million kilometers accumulated length measured at an average speed of 10 strokes per second and combined with the movement of the left had to and fro on the guitar neck are long enough to go round the planet earth. "
An album on the Tangent label made in Paris in the 80's I would guess. Curious mixture of soukous and tinny synth sounds and funk guitars.
"Arguably West Africa’s best kept secret, Benin's finest band spent the 1970s mixing funk and Afrobeat with the bewitching rhythms of their native Voudoun tradition. Their output, both in quantity and quality, was astonishing - and live they're still producing revelatory psychedelic grooves. 'It's like feeling that a doll in your image is being pierced through and that the needles are in the hands of James Brown.' Les Inrockuptibles
The cultural and spiritual riches of traditional Beninese music had an immense impact on the sound of Benin’s modern music. Benin is the birthplace of Vodun and two Vodun rhythms dominate the music of Orchestre Poly Rythmo: Sato, an amazing, energetic rhythm performed using an immense vertical drum, and Sakpata, a rhythm dedicated to the divinity who protects people from smallpox. Both rhythms are represented here mixed in with Funk, Soul, Crazy organ sounds and Psychedelic guitar riffs."
Not much found about Mr O'Reilly. This E.P. was found at Brick Lane a few years back I think. Again it was the amusing sleeve that made me buy it. The curious renditions of classical works fused with cockney knees-up pub piano and honking saxaphone would make most lovers of Brahms and Lizst reach for the ear-plugs!
Happy to upload some more Hank Snow from an EP I found a couple of years ago from the early 60's I imagine although these tracks seem much earlier. Nice country and western/ rockabilly cross-over style , more upbeat than the maudlin C&W of that era.
Clarence Eugene "Hank" Snow was born on May 9th, 1914 in the sleepy fishing village of Brooklyn, Queens County, on Nova Scotia's beautiful South Shore, just down the tracks from Liverpool.
"As a boy, Hank faced many difficulties and shortcomings. He had to face the trauma of his parents' divorce at just eight years old and he was forced to stay with his grandparents. He then had to deal with an abusive grandmother who forbid him to see his mother. He regularly sneaked out at night and walked the railroad tracks to Liverpool where his mother was living. Not willing to return to his grandmother, who would often beat him for visiting his mom, he would sometimes seek shelter in Liverpool's railway station, now home of the Hank Snow Country Music Centre.
Both his parents had musical talent and Hank picked up his basic guitar-playing skills from his mother. In 1926, Hank went to sea as a 12-year-old cabin boy on fishing schooners based out of Lunenburg to escape his abusive step-father and never returned to school. With his first earned income he bought his first guitar, a T. Eaton Special for $5.95. While at sea, Hank would listen to Jimmie Rodgers on the radio and began to imitate him and entertain the crew. It wasn't long before Hank had picked up his own style."
EP on the Columbia label from the early 60's I would guess. I've had this one for a while and can't remember where I bought it. I've always had a soft spot for a bit of Doo-Wop and this is some of the best despite the orchestral accompaniment.
Wikipedia says -
"Frankie Lymon was born in Harlem, New York City to a truck driver father and a mother who worked as a maid. Lymon's father, Howard Lymon, also sang in a gospel group known as the Harlemaires; Frankie Lymon and his brothers Lewis and Howie sang with the Harlemaire Juniors (a fourth Lymon brother, Timmy, was a singer, though not with the Harlemaire Juniors). The Lymon family struggled to make ends meet, and Lymon began working as a grocery boy at age ten, augmenting his legitimate income with proceeds gained from hustling prostitutes and was known for having relationships with women twice his age.
At the age of 12, Lymon heard a local doo-wop group known as the Coupe De Villes at a school talent show. He befriended their lead singer, Herman Santiago, and he eventually became a member of the group, now calling itself both The Ermines and The Premiers. Dennis Jackson of Columbus, Georgia was one of the main influences of Lymon's life. His personal donation of $500 helped start Frankie's career.
One day in 1955, a neighbor gave The Premiers several love letters that had been written to him by his girlfriend, with the hopes that he could give the boys inspiration to write their own songs. Merchant and Santiago adapted one of the letters into a song called "Why Do Birds Sing So Gay?" With Lymon's input, the song became "Why Do Fools Fall in Love". The Premiers, now calling themselves The Teenagers, got their first shot at fame after impressing Richard Barrett, a singer with The Valentines. Barrett, in turn, got the group an audition with record producer George Goldner. On the day of the group's audition, Santiago was the original lead singer but Santiago was late. Lymon stepped up and told Goldner that he knew the part because he helped write the song."
Another EP found in a charity shop last year featuring whimsical songs about subjects not normally sung about in that strange olde worlde voice of his.
"Paddy Roberts (1910 - 1975) was a popular songwriter, having previously been a lawyer and a pilot (serving with the RAF in World War II). He was born in South Africa and died in the United Kingdom. He enjoyed success with a number of songs in the 1950s and 1960s and wrote songs for several films. He released several LPs and EPs of his own material, often featuring what were, for the time, slightly risqué lyrics."
A record from that tragic country that has been in the news so much lately. A record found at a flea market some years ago. This record was recorded in 1974. The two tracks featured here are the title track "8th Sacrement" and " Pace Domine".
"Formed in the Port-Au-Prince suburb of Petion-Ville by the Chancy brothers, Albert on bass and Adolphe on guitar, this young band won the Radio Haiti mini-jazz competition in 1968. They relocated to Brooklyn in 1971, and their song "New York City," which spoke of the difficulty of life in exile, reached #1 on the Paris pop charts in August 1975. They competed with Ska-Shah for top band honors in the 70s and 80s and fought "musical duels" similar to the Weber Sicot/Jean-Baptiste Nemours battles of the 50s and 60s.
An irresistible live band, Tabou Combo takes Haitian compas to the widest of audiences. From their regular appearances in the '80s at the famous Zenith Theatre in Paris, to an audience of 20,000 in New York's Central Park, to the Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans, in football stadiums throughout the Caribbean, and on the turntables of the top DJs, this band makes people dance. Influenced by funk and soul in their adopted home, Tabou took on the likeness of the Commodores on the covers of their late-'70s releases. They even made a demo tape with hopes of a Motown contract. Their desire to reach the Black US market remains unsatisfied, but they should be proud that popular musicians such as Kassav' from the Antilles/Paris and Wilfrido Vargas from the Dominican Republic have absorbed their music."