Primer on Saharan music - sweet pictures of Tuaregs with guitars and the backstory on how this genre came to light. You should have to be forty years in the desert to make music like this. It’s right. (See also: ‘tuareg’ tag on Bandcamp. My fave is Super Onze.)
One of the joys of the Internet is a connection to rare, unpublished, uncirculated works. I had never had access to much African music—now I do.
Reissues of one-of-a-kind recordings from Africa. Some are hifi and masterful; others are experimental and fresh. If you aren’t convinced that a web directory can still be fascinating to explore, wander through this.
An attempt to recreate the notorious “Gumboots: Accordian Jive Hits, Vol. 2” cassette that once mesmerized Paul Simon. This certainly mesmerizes! The sound of ‘groaner’ Mahlathini, alongside The Mahotella Queens or Dark City Sisters, is transporting. (To me, discarding the works of these musicians does make Simon’s appropriation a crime—if he had just introduced us to all of these artists.)
Hey, alright! Focused on Ethiopian music specifically—and instruments, too: heard of the krar or the washint? (Count me as another who has found themselves lost in the musical tunnels of Mulatu Astatke.) Some good mixes on here, if you want to feel your way around.