A collection of songs from the taarab king of Mombasa, Yaseen Mohamed
1xLP, 4-page-insert, Digital Download
A collection of 12 taarab songs from 1960s coastal Kenya by Yaseen Mohamed (Mac & Party). Musically rich and unique for its time and place, this compilation is a treasure trove of songs and a feast for your ear. Yaseen’s arrangements drew influences from Indian and Egyptian film music, rhythm and blues, jazz and Latin music. Sung with a characteristic, dark voice, Yaseen’s Swahili poetry was layered over rich percussion patterns, accompanied by the distinctive sound of the Clavioline (a proto-synth) and amplified taishokoto, a novelty harp instrument of Japanese origin that Yaseen helped popularise in Kenya in the 1940s. On many songs he is accompanied by his wife Mimi on vocals. Compiled from the elusive Mzuri catalogue, originally released in Kenya in the 60’s, the LP comes with extensive liner-notes describing the life of Yaseen, his musical background and the early days of the Kenyan record industry.
Reissued: October 2020