“The future of music happened decades ago” is the moto of Analog Africa for a reason. The label was founded in 2006 by Tunisian-born Samy Ben Redjeb with the aim to showcase some of the most fascinating music created by mankind. Samy Ben Redjeb became interested in African music while traveling back and forth on vacation and work stints, but turned it into a serious passion after finding a job as a resident DJ of a hotel in Senegal. It was in the capital city of Dakar, where he began organising weekly African music parties that he began to realize that his perception of African genres was riddled with clichés and that the African music he was discovering was much more sophisticated and futuristic than the African sounds that one could hear on western airwaves. Also, the sense of grooves and the dexterity of the musicians were second to none. These sounds coming from what feels like a parallel musical world which very few knew existed had to be showcased.
Analog Africa was established in 2006 with the release of a compilation by the Green Arrows Band from Zimbabwe and the label has since presented close to 40 projects and has traveled to 28 African countries. The music released on the label could be described as psychedelic, hypnotic, mystic, sometimes quirky and always incredibly groovy. These sounds, surprisingly rarely if ever released outside of Africa – were released with the aim of surprising the listener. The songs are all directly licensed from the artists and the producers on the content and considerable importance is also placed on detailed liners notes telling unusual stories about unusual musicians, complete with rare photographs, interviews and full discographies.
In recent years Analog Africa crossed the Atlantic and ventured into the genres from the Americas that had been influenced by African Folklore. In 2012 a compilation of Obscure Colombian songs called “Diablos del Ritmo – The Colombian Melting pot 1960 – 1980” was released. In 2014 the journey continued into deep northern Brasilian waters with two compilations featuring Mestre Cupijó hailing from the gorgeous fluvial city of Cameta and the mystic Siria style from Pará before continuing to the North East of the country and released an album called “the imaginary Soundtrack to a Brazilian Western Movie” by legendary Accordionist Camarão from Caruarú (Pernambuco).
Αwards and nominations:
German Record Critics’ Prize 2011 Winner – “Angola Soundtrack: The Unique Sound of Luanda
“Bambara Mystic Soul” – 2011 Nominee – Compilation of the Year
Gilles Peterson Worldwide Award 2011 Nominee – Label of the Year
Red Dot Designer Award 2008 Winner -“African Scream Contest
European Design “Silver” Award 2010 Winner- “Legends of Benin”