Various Artists - Next Stop ... Soweto Vol. 2: Soultown. R&B, Funk & Psych Sounds from the Townships 1969-1976
Strut continue their essential three-part excursion into the archives of South African music with the second volume of the ‘Next Stop… Soweto’ series.
With international forms of music discouraged by the South African authorities during the 1960s, township jive or mbaqanga arose as innovative artists combined close harmony singing and traditional African styles with a bouncy township beat. Imported US music became strictly the domain of house parties, private record collections and underground shebeens.
Despite this, a small but healthy soul scene flourished with bands like The Movers adding marabi elements into their funk and early disco sound, The Klooks and the Anchors all directly inspired by US soul and R&B and the Hammond organ of Booker T and Jimmy Smith. From ’69, a string of 3-minute blasts of energy surfaced on local labels like City Special, Soul Town, Atlantic City and Soul-Soul, often under the intimidating gaze of producer David Thekwane.
Volume 2 of Next Stop… Soweto also touches on mbaqanga and jazz artists who dabbled with soul and funk fusions during the early ‘70s – the Mgababa Queens and Mahotella Queens, and revered SA jazz combo The Heshoo Beshoo Group. We also feature a rare psychedelic track from one of the only recordings made of playwright Gibson Kente’s acclaimed theatre pieces, ‘Too Late’.
The Next Stop… Soweto series is the result of several years of painstaking research and vinyl archaeology in South Africa by compilers Duncan Brooker and Francis Gooding. The CD package features an extensive booklet featuring detailed notes by David Coplan, author of ‘In Township Tonight’, alongside many previously unseen archive photos.
Volume 3 coming soon: South African jazz 1960-1978
For more information: www.nextstopsoweto-2.com