Western producers exploring the indigenous sounds of third-world countries is certainly not a new concept. And western producers utilizing (bastardizing?) the indigenous sounds of other countries is even more commonplace. But things get interesting when the feedback loop goes full circle, and producers capture residents of smaller countries performing their own takes on Western born styles. It's hardly a surprise that hip-hop would find it's way to countries such as Senegal. The African nation is a former French colony, and with France being the world's biggest hip-hop market outside of the U.S., it makes sense that those connections would spread. This compilation of Senegal's top hip-hop artists was assembled by Benny Herson after the one-time student wrote his thesis on the Senegalese hip-hop culture, then returned to capture the music he had written about. He recorded over 50 acts, with 11 appearing on this disc's 13 tracks. The artists perform in a variety of languages, with English and French flowing into African tongues. BMG 44 offer the hardest entry, chanting in a local dialect against blazing horn stabs. The overwhelming dusty grooves found across this disc indicate that the Senegalese sound most closely resembles the underground sound found elsewhere, although this could also be a result of Herson's particular taste. Regardless, fans of hip-hop's pure fusion of beats and words (even if they're non-translated) will find plenty to nod their heads to. ~ Joshua Glazer, All Music Guide All Music Guide
released September 1, 2001
Ben Herson (Benny Beats/Nomadic Wax LLC)
Daniel C. Cantor (Notable.com/Hummable
All lyrics by the rappers and all music by the producers
Recorded at Sacre Keur Community Center, Dakar, Senegal Summer 2001
Mixed and Edited by:
Dan Cantor: Notable Productions Studios, Watertown, MA
B. Herson: Nomadic Wax Studios, Brooklyn, NY
Jesse Cannon: Cannon Sound Foundation, Montclair, NJ
Jonathan Wyner at M works, Cambridge, MA
Beats and Midi Programming:
B. Herson: All tracks
Guitar: Dan Cantor on "Deglu Xel", "Abass"
Justin Rothberg aka J-Ro on "Intro"
Yat Fu on "Art Attendan"
Rob Jost on all tracks
Brandon Patton on "Deglu Xel"
Michelle Casillas on "Never Forget"
Sarah Borok on "Shiffai"
Tia King on "Abass"
B. Herson on "chagga", "africans don't wanna understand"
Dan Cantor on "abass", "deglu xel", "wax degg", "art attendan", "begguma"
Dan Brain on "missalu aduna"
Rob Jost on "never forget"
Lance Martin on "abass"
B. Herson on "never forget", "mbedo bama woo"
Mr. Ni on "intro" , "wax degg"