Thursday, 22 August 2013

Rachid Taha / Gatanga Boys

World Music Corner

Here are a couple of gems from a couple of albums I've been listening to recently

What are you talking about Rachid, what bloody tape?


Rachid Taha - 'Algerian Tango' feat Mick Jones (2013)

First up is Algeria's king of Punk Rai, Rachid Taha and 'Algerian Tango', taken from his latest album, Zoom and with non other than The Clash legend, Mick Jones on chorus duty, delivering some great lines over a sinister dub track.


Rachid Taha is a big fan of The Clash and sites them as a big influence, it's also widely rumoured that Rachid was perhaps the inspiration behind the classic 'Rock the Casbah'. In 1981 after a Clash concert in Paris, Rachid gave band members a demo of his music (he was in a punk band at the time, singing predominately in Arabic) with Strummer and co promising to give it a whirl. Rachid never heard back from them thinking that was that but a few years later 'Rock the Casbah' was released, tenuous perhaps but spooky. Of course Rachid Taha recorded the sensational cover, 'Rock El Casbah' and has performed with Mick Jones notably at the Stop the War concert in 2005.

Gatanga Boys - 'Keep Change Kairitu' (1977)

Second up to bat is a veritable foot tapper, Kenya's Gatanga Boys with the funky 'Keep Change Kairitu', which I heard on Soundway Records', Kenya Special and it just hit the mark. These cats hail out of the central Kenyan town of Gatanga, funnily enough and the song is apparently about a local tradition where the tea and coffee farmers congregate at the local pubs on a big harvest. They'd have wads of cash and would show off splashing it about recklessly, buying drinks and ting. The 'keep change' bit refers to the big tips left to the honeys (Kairitus, meaning young girls) serving the men drinks. 'Buy one for yourself love', thousands of miles apart but we are all not so different eh?

I saw her first,

Soundway Records


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Rachid Taha / Gatanga Boys
4/ 5


23 August 2013 at 10:43

Two beauties today..I have been listening to RT it...both that and the GB track are So MF

24 August 2013 at 10:31

I echo Old Pa - beautiful stuff.