Arrival in Angola

img_2135Akwasi Beats is back again after a long hiatus. What better place to start than in Angola. Analog Africa have released a few wonderful compilations that are highly recommended tracking down for an entry point into the sounds of Lusophone Africa.

África Tentação (African Temptation) was set up in 1977 by José Paulo Serrao and Joka Serrao. The group’s aim was to introduce a Portuguese audience to the music of Angola; more particularly the sounds of Bailundo, a municipality in the centre of the country. The band were made up of Henrique (drums), Mario Bernardo “Sofia” (Voice, Percussion and Trumpet), Freitas (drums), Joe Mitchell (Bass), Joka (rhythm guitar), Zé Paulo (guitar), Botto (keyboard), Jaime Inácio “Bolinhas” (Congas), Nelo Carvalho (vocals and guitar), Nelson (guitar) and Nando Quental (Vocals).

The band recorded 5 LPs from the late 1970s to early 1980s:

Ufeku Ndalota La Do Si Discos (780320) 1978
Angola ’79 La Do Si Discos (790532) 1979
Mulher De Angola Arsom Records (801008) 1980
Quando Fui A Benguela Arsom Records (830423) 1983
Kissange -Saudade Negra Arsom Records (860633) 1986

The two tracks I have selected are from their 1980 release Mulher de Angola

Zanzala

Maria Nao Tem Vesido

Update –  The translation to Maria is as follows:

Maria wants to go out
She has nothing to wear
She’s no longer got any money
To buy anything at all
 
She wants to sell her wares
But she has no corn, no beans
 
Maria wants to go out
It weighs heavy on her heart
Along comes someone
Along comes temptation
 
Africa temptation (i.e. the band’s name)
Africa temptation…
Thanks to Sarah Baily for the translation

 

 

Returning Home

It’s Sunday. Day of rest and recuperation, after the excesses of the previous night. So I feel it fitting we should continue our gentle exploration of Cape Verdean music.

Frank Mimita moved away from the islands in 1966, to look for a better life in Lisbon, Portugal. He became a professional musician recording with several bands under Luis Rendall stewardship. He then moved onto the Netherlands where he permanently settled and recorded several albums exploring his Cape Verdean heritage, including an album of Mornas and Coladeiras. After his return home to the islands in 1979 he died less than a year later in January 1980.

Today’s selection is from what seems to be a late 70’s album. It is one of my favourite Cape Verdean tracks. It appears to have been co-written with Angolan guitarist Carlos Viera Dias. The organ on the title track is so sorrowful and is matched by the trumpets.

It brings tears to the eyes.

 Forti trabadja palguem

Record Details:
Frank Mimita – Já Nõ Tem Traboi Nã Nõs Terra (197?) – La Do Si Discos (774009)
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