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Sunday
May202012

FRANCIS BEBEY - African Electronic Music 1975-1982

Long revered by African music aficionados, the late Francis Bebey was Cameroon's renaissance man, a journalist, novelist and musicologist whose zest for life and studied playfulness with language and instrumentation is apparent from the moment opener "New Track" bubbles into being.

"Brought up on Western styles and instruments, and educated at the Sorbonne and NYU, Cameroon's Francis Bebey studied Spanish classical guitar and led jazz bands before finding his way back to African traditional music as a researcher for UNESCO; he was in his forties when he began recording his distinctive brand of Afropop, publishing more than 20 albums before he died, in 2001, at the age of 72. The anthology's title is slightly misleading; this isn't so much 'electronic music' as it is idiosyncratic, border-hopping jazz fusion that happens to use synthesizers and rhythm boxes. But who cares? Whatever you call it, it's brilliant." - SPIN

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