Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Exciting News! New African Music Blog from the VOA

I just had to share this with you as soon as I got it. Matthew's new blog is just incredible. It's great news for African music lovers and I'm proud that I played some small part in bringing it about. Check it out here.
Dear John,

Hello, I hope this message finds you in good spirits. My name is Matthew Lavoie. I am a music broadcaster and producer for the Africa service of the Voice of America. We broadcast throughout Africa in English, French, Portuguese, Amharic, Tigrigna, Oromo, Hausa, Swahili, Ndebele, Shona, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, and Somali.

I have consulted the discographies of African music that you helped put together for many years, and for the last three months I have been a regular visitor to your Likembe blog. Likembe is one of the most informative and diverse African music blogs I've read. Thanks for all of your efforts!! I especially enjoyed the Daro Mbaye entry, and your recent postings about Somali funk ... great sound files, great videos, and I appreciate the effort you made to talk in detail about particular songs.

Reading Likembe convinced me that blogs can sustain serious discussions of African music. In fact ... I was inspired enough to start a blog of my own to feature recordings from our (the VOA's) African music archives. We have got a collection of over 10,000 audio reels, several thousand lps and 45s, thousands of cassettes and cds. Our collection includes music from every country on the continent and includes rare unreleased recordings that were made for VOA programs (for e.g. unreleased recordings of Fela and the Koola Lobitos, Cardinal Rex Lawson, and many Apala recordings from the mid 1960s - I know you love Nigerian music). Our radio programs, however, are broadcast exclusively in Africa and there are many potentially interested African music lovers who never get to enjoy the recordings we have. I thought a blog might be a nice way to share some of this music. Here is the link...

I am just getting this thing rolling and will add new entries weekly.

I am also hoping that you can help me! The first entry I posted featured the Rwandan musician Bizimungu Dieudonne. I love his music but have not been able to learn much about him. Do you know anything about him? his career? his discography?

Thanks again for all of the great music at Likembe!!



Ambrose Ehirim said...

Thanks for sharing this with us, John. You are doing great.

Comb & Razor said...

hmmm... another one to add to the ever-growing blogroll!

Anonymous said...

I will definately add it to my feed reader. After blogging on African safaris its nice to read this and others like it.

aliyudaku said...

Nice blog, I love African music and also blog about African music, Now I am working on Africamars, a new African TV Online Service.

desmondgale said...

I like music very much. Music gives us relief. This is a nice blog about the african music.

Anonymous said...

Have posted a feature on African Jazz 2000 - 2009 at which might interest you

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