One of the most sought after African records out there, Chapter One, by Blo, is being reissued by Mr. Bongo. Originally released by EMI in 1973, Mr. Bongo has given it the deluxe treatment some forty years later. Remastered on high quality vinyl, the updated version comes with a gatefold and the exact artwork from these African Rock pioneers out of Nigeria. Known for their work in Ginger Baker’s group Salt before this project, Berkely ‘Ike’ Jones (guitar), Laolu ‘Akins’ Akintobi (drums) and Mike ‘Gbenga’ Odumosu (bass) (the B-L-O in the name) are credited as the first Rock band to emerge from Africa. Fusing Afrobeat, driving guitars, funky bass, Psychedelic grooves with late 60’s Western Rock sounds and drums, this record could be all instrumental less the wailing vocals that are present throughout a few of the tracks. This original record is highly sought after by collectors. It often fetches upwards of $4000 for the original. A solid effort one again overlooked by the public back then, and atthe time EMI pushed the band to go even funkier moving forward because this one wasn’t funky enough! Unbelievable. However, it came back in the spotlight once again in recent years when Madlib sampled “Time To Face The Sun” for his track “Face The Sun”, exposing a whole new audience to their music. This release is a part of Mr. Bongo’s African Collection, which contains Blo’s Chapter One, Ebo Taylor’s Conflict and S/T, Peter King’s Shango and Miliki Sound, and finally C.K. Mann & His Carousel 7’s Funky Highlife. This reissue is a worthy piece for anyone’s collection, and a gem of African music. Listen to the original track that Madlib sampled below.
Stream the album and more info from Mr. Bongo here.
Check out the video of the reissue package: