Atavist Records and Tapes (recordings)

Welcome.  Please email mp3’s to to help create this audio archive of singular traditional music.  Criteria for submission: obscure tunes with high interest to our readers, and some connection to traditional music of the Americas or Africa.

1. Igha Suo Gamwen, by Rolling Stone And His Traditional Aces, from “Marvellous Boy – Calypso from West Africa” (Honest Jon CD)

The inter-war dance bands of British West Africa are often strikingly similar in sound to Trinidadian orchestras like Lovey’s String Band (credited with the first calypso recordings, in 1912). However, the first West African calypso recordings in the modern style are from Freetown, Sierra Leone in the early 1950s, by Ebenezer Calendar and Famous Scrubbs. In arrangements blending African and European instruments, the brass plays out the legacy of colonial military bands, albeit hair-down and a little ramshackle now; and the beautiful creole lyrics are as upful, quick, current, musical and intimate as any classic calypsonian’s.


2.  “Cotton-Eyed Joe,” by Ritchie Stearns, from “Fresh Old Time Music” (Rounder CD)

Could someone please send us the relevant liner notes about this tune from the Seeger compilation?


3. ” James Booker,” by Plank Road String Band (Field Recorders’ Collective CD)

Could someone please send us the relevant liner notes about this tune from the FRC compilation?


One Response to “Atavist Records and Tapes (recordings)”

  1. John Salmon Says:

    Given your interests, I’m sure you’ve heard Orchestra Baobab…

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