As if Mr. Bongo hasn’t bolstered world vinyl collections on the seven inch tip enough, we have to speak about the Lp game they have been laying down for a long time. Not one to pussyfoot around, they’ve reissued many important records in many genres. Today’s record is a monster. This legendary album out of Ghana in 1975, Gyedu-Blay Ambolley’s solo record Simigwa, which marries folk, funk, Afrobeat and Highlife (and was produced by the legendary Ebo Taylor) is most definitely one that has to be in your shelves. Playing in such bands as Houghas Extraordinaires, Meridians Of Tema, Ghana Broadcasting Band and the Uhuru Dance Band (recruited by Ebo for this one), Ambolley was leading the charge in putting together music that put together Highlife with funk and soul from the States. With the Uhuru Dance Band, he’d trek to Nigeria to play at the Shrine with Fela. Very important happenings here. Simigwa, if you haven’t figured it out, was influenced primarily by Soul Brother Number One, Mister Dynamite, the one and only James Brown. This is the record that puts JB into Highlife music, and it’s done quite well if we may add. Vocal and horns stabs, rhythm sections and drum breaks are all over this record. If this is something new for you, then we suggest you take it in, because we’re talking 1975 in Africa, putting out some of the funkiest music in the world. Imagine hearing this for the first time and being blown away? We can and we were. Here’s a chance to get it officially from Mr. Bongo with replica original art, licensed with love from Essiebons. This is one funk trip you need to get one.
Listen to the record below: