The CD Songs of the African Coast: Cafe Music of Liberia includes music recorded in 1948-49 by the noted ethnomusicologist, Arthur Alberts. Don’t expect traditional drums or African guitar music in this CD, but rather music that came from the new world. The musical genres featured are calypso, early jazz, and blues, performed by ome of the best known artists in Liberia and West Africa at the time. The piano is used extensively.
Arthur Alberts served throughout West and North Africa during the Second World War as head of the Office of War Information for the region. He returned in 1948 to West Africa to extensively record music throughout the region (Gold Coast, Congo, French West Africa). The-purpose of the expedition was to document African music and to show the relations between African and American music. In 1950 he released a vitally important 78 rpm set. Tribal, Folk and Cafe Music of West Africa, that documented the cross-cultural ties between African and American music.
The 18 pieces on Songs of the African Coast: Cafe Music of Liberia include six songs never commercially released as well as previously unreleased photos. The other tracks have not been heard, in some cases, since their release over 50 years ago.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.