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Wednesday, Feb 25 2015 | 12:24
Image: 1595645 In conjunction with compiler and highlife researcher Dr. Markus Coester, Soundway Records present a very special release. Double CD & triple 180g gatefold vinyl (with a bonus 7 inch).

This 45 includes the two first ever recordings by a certain Fela Ransome Kuti with his band The Highlife Rakers. Recorded by Melodisc in London in 1960 both tracks have been unearthed after more than fifty years in hiding.

In many ways this compilation is a prequel of sorts to Soundway's groundbreaking Nigeria & Ghana Special compilations, telling the early story of modern highlife's foundation & formulation. It traces the music from West Africa to London, adding elements of jazz, mambo and calypso along the way and paving the way for the afro sounds of the 1970s.

Accompanied by a 44 page CD booklet and 12 page vinyl booklet, the notes by Dr. Coester include rare photographs, labels and advert reproductions alongside some stunning and very rare recordings.

TRACK LISTING:

LP 1: Ginger Folorunso Johnson & His Afro-Cuban Band – HIGHLIFE NO. 5 / Kwamalah Quaye Sextetto Africana – SON OF AFRICA / Nigerian Union Rhythm Group – ABENI / Steve Rhodes & His London Hi-lifers – DRINK A TEA / Fela Ransome-Kuti & The Highlife Rakers – FELA’S SPECIAL / Steve Rhodes & His London Hi-lifers – OJU RERE / Chris Ajilo & His Cubanos – AFRO MOOD / Soundz Africana – AFRICANA / The Black Star Band – OBAA AMPONSA PANDOGO / Buddy Pipp’s Highlifers – GHANA SPECIAL / The Quavers – MONEY MONEY / Afro Rhythm Kings – DONALDO’S SAMBA

LP 2: Afro Rhythm Kings – MARABI DANCE / The Quavers – KITCH / Bobby Benson & His Orchestra – OKOKOKO / John Santos Martins Accompanied By Zeal Onyia & His Band – FANCY BABY / E. C. Arinze & The Empire Rhythm Orchestra - BIKO RAPUM PAULINA / John Santos Martins Accompanied By Zeal Onyia & His Band – MAGGIE / Lord Ganda & Rupert Nurse’s Calypso Band – GHANA, FORWARD FOREVER / Adams’ African Sky Rockets – A NIGHT IN PORT HARCOURT / Fela Ransome-Kuti & The Highlife Rakers – AIGANA / Nigerian Union Rhythm Group – TORTOISE MAMBO / Bobby Benson & His Combo – NIGER MAMBO / Rans Boi’s African Highlife Band – HIGHLIFE COMES TO EUROPE / Eddie Lamptey & The Peoples Highlife Band feat. Eddie Red Tettey – MARIA / West African Rhythm Brothers – EGBE MI / West African Rhythm Brothers – IWA D’AREKERE

LP 3: West African Swing Stars – OMO AFRICA / Ginger Folorunso Johnson & His AfroCuban Band – BROWN SKIN GAL / Awotwi Paynin & His Ghana Rockers – BROWN SKIN GAL / Buddy Pipp’s Highlifers – GEORGINA / T. Odueso’s Akesan Highlifers – EYO MANO MI / Nigerian Union Rhythm Group – OJIKOLOBO / Willie Payne & The Starlite Tempos – WA SISE / Fela Ransome-Kuti & His Koola Lobitos – NIGERIAN INDEPENDENCE / The Black Star Band – ABROKYIRI AWO YI / The Black Star Band – EKUONA RHYTHM / Victor Ola-Iya & His ‘Cool Cats’ – ANYIN GA NA Bonus
7”: Fela Ransome-Kuti & The Highlife Rakers – FELA’S SPECIAL / Fela Ransome-Kuti & The Highlife Rakers – AIGANA

LISTEN:

https://soundcloud.com/soundway-records/fela-ransome-kuti-the-highlife-rakers-felas-special Available from 20.03.2015
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