Jul 27, 2011
Analog Africa: How freedom sounds ...
Detective and Archivist: Samy Ben Redjeb raises with his label Analog Africa forgotten treasures. Its mission is to save music from oblivion.
Collectors live dangerous, if only because their passion can easily become addictive. Where to put all the beautiful things? And how do you keep them in good condition? The German-Tunesian Samy Ben Redjeb has a particularly hard hit: He has a dust allergy. For years he shared in his small apartment in Frankfurt, Germany with just under 30,000 vinyl from Africa. He recently renovated the apartment and rearranged the meter-high vinyl treasures into a separate room. In the small backyard office, headquarters of his record label Analog Africa hundreds of other are stored. Samy Ben Redjeb passion for African images of the sixties and seventies - a music era, in Europe and the USA is currently being rediscovered.
So bring British record companies like Strut and Soundway out classics and rarities of the Afro-Beat, and bands such as Foals, Bombay Bicycle Club Vampire Weekend or integrate highlife guitars in their sound. Samy Ben-Redjeb has published recently in this niche market now has nine albums, the compilation "Angola Soundtrack - The unique sound of Luanda (1968-1976)".
In his office, the 40-year-old the original disks for ages and countries has sorted. Among them: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Angola, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, or Senegal. In all these countries he has searched for weeks and brought music and musicians, including original recordings licenses to Germany. "If I find a brilliant record, I buy it, even 50 times to help finance the sale with my label," he says.
Ben Redjeb is a loose type of hooded sweatshirt and sneakers. Until he was 17, he lived with his father in Tunisia and visited his German mother only during the holidays. "Not an easy time," says the Deutschtunesier, which is an early fascination for pop music music interessierte.Arabische him, however. "I am not a big fan of arababischen sounds, even the political hip-hop from there, am not my thing." But the democratic movement in his second home makes him proud. "Unlike before, now everyone knows where is Tunisia."
Ben Redjeb story is that of a restless: After school diploma in Germany, he goes to the Navy, is an instructor in Greece, working as a hotel-DJ in Turkey and Senegal. In Dakar, he is the first time with the music of the continent in touch - "a defining moment" with his late twenties, opened a shop for African Accessories in Frankfurt, with little success.. A friend gave him the idea to try it as a steward. "A solid job and fly low to find my music, that was it!" Soon he is working on flights to Accra, Lagos and Addis Ababa. Another advantage is that he speaks six languages: In addition to German and Arabic, French, Italian, English and Spanish.
There are the languages of the former colonialists, who facilitate the frank Ben Redjeb access to land and its people. The purchase of the album "Shuba Gwindingwi Raine" by Thomas Mapfumo (1980), which was recorded in Zimbabwe at the end of the Revolutionary War had changed everything, says the 40-year-old. "That was the sound I've always wanted." So began his mission to save music from oblivion. He is addicted to free music: "Where people are fighting for their freedom, because the musicians have something that they have perhaps never more later."
The foundations he laid for his label in 2004 with the publication of Songs of the Zimbabwean band The Green Arrows. The group led by singer Zexie Manatsa belonged in the early seventies, the most famous of the country. Later as the band leader Ben Redjeb twenty years makes, this is old almost 60 years and works as a pastor. "He has agreed to a publication, although he said that this was the music for him long gone," said Ben Rejeb. For the re-release of Ben Redjeb initially missing the reference numbers of the singles. But he needs to get hold of the original tapes, the store at a record company in South Africa.
Ben Redjeb awakens intuition. He interviewed producers, distributors and representatives and months later, in the backyard of a former warehouse, South American plate dealer find. "I have found there every single plate of the Green Arrows and purchased about 4000 singles," says Ben Rejeb. But back in Germany until he finds a label that will release the album "because most of the music was African," says Ben Rejeb. Eventually enters a small label, which later goes bankrupt. In the end, put the first album four years of work and material gain of 2000 € - but for a larger ideal. "By publishing the Green Arrows fever came back to Zimbabwe. The band went on tour again. "
Ben Redjeb is picky. "An archaeologist takes everything he excavates. I have come out only songs that sound especially in my ears, "he says. Afropsychedelik, polyrhythmic funk and tribal-diagonal rhythm and blues particularly interest him. It is the sound of Western instruments, varies with age-old African music. "We are black, proud and beautiful: In this new consciousness, the music has developed as a political revolt. It marks the identity of this generation, "says Ben Rejeb.'m In different ways, to that end, the music in all African countries changed," In many places, the sound over the years, faster and more aggressive and after the independence vote colors came from the diaspora like that of Otis Redding , Aretha Franklin or James Brown to, "says Ben Rejeb. has in some countries, the music mixed with sounds derehemaliger slave sites in Cuba, from Cape Verde and the Dominican Republic." Thus the music of the islands are practically like returning to the Continent-runner ". this style, he dedicated the analog-Africa-album" Mambo Loco ".
And because Ben Redjeb is important that the listeners get a feel for the history of music, he puts every album he puts in a detailed booklet about the musician and his research. "I want to make people just love the way I am," he says. And this love can be felt.
The translation was technically supported. Due to this there may be some mistakes in the english version, whereby the orginal version was in German. Everyone interested in the German version, check out the link. But still the english version seems to interesting to hide. Enjoy!!!