Voices of Africa

Exploring the voice has always been an exciting part of the Real World Records catalogue and some outstanding vocal performances come courtesy of musicians from Africa who have recorded for the label.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be digging deeper into key albums by African vocalists, from Geoffrey Oryema’s beautiful 1990 Exile, to Les Amazones d’Afrique’s République Amazone, released in 2017 and which celebrates modern African women.

We’ll be bringing you some rare and as-yet-unseen photos and video footage from the archives as we rediscover these great albums.

A rare performance of 'Obiero' by Ayub Ogada live in The Wood Room at Real World Studios in 1995

Throughout April and May, we are offering an exclusive Voices of Africa vinyl bundle via the Real World Records store. Purchase all four of these albums together and get a 30% discount.

Visit the store here

You can also choose to buy the above LPs individually, plus a number of other African artists also included in our Voices of Africa campaign. These individual LPs and CDs can be purchased with a 25% discount by using the code >> realworld25 << at checkout.

Les Amazones d’Afrique République Amazones CD / LP
Ayub Ogada En Mana Kuoyo CD / LP
Geoffrey Oryema Exile CD / LP
Papa Wemba Emotion CD / LP
Thomas Mapfumo Rise Up CD
The Drummers of Burundi Live at Real World CD

  • Ayub Ogada

    Kenya

    Ayub Ogada is regarded as one of the greatest Kenyan artists of all time. He was born in 1956 in Mombassa as Job Seda, a descendant of the proud Luo people of western Kenya.

  • Les Amazones d’Afrique

    Benin, Gabon, Mali, Nigeria

    Les Amazones d'Afrique are an all-female collective of west African musicians campaigning for gender equality.

  • Papa Wemba

    Democratic Republic of Congo

    With his dynamic vocals and flamboyant personality, Papa Wemba played an essential role in the Central African music. Respectfully known as 'the king of Rhumba Rock', Wemba successfully fused African traditions with Western pop and rock influences.

  • Geoffrey Oryema

    Uganda

  • Thomas Mapfumo & the Blacks Unlimited

    Zimbabwe

    Thomas Mapfumo was born in 1945 in Marondera, a small town south of the Rhodesian capital, Salisbury (Harare). He is one of Zimbabwe's greatest living musicians.

  • The Drummers of Burundi

    Burundi

    The Drummers of Burundi first took the UK by storm at the legendary inaugural WOMAD Festival in 1982. They have been a major influence on such musicians as The Clash, Joni Mitchell, Echo and the Bunnymen, Adam and the Ants, Malcolm McLaren and Bow Wow Wow.

By Online Editor

Published on Tue, 17 April 18

Further reading

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan at WOMAD 1985: Were you there?

Nusrat's concert at the festival in 1985 was the first in front of a primarily non-Asian audience

The Breath’s acoustic album ‘Only Stories’ out today

The Manchester based alt-folk duo recorded the album live at Real World Studios.

Entering the sonic world of The Gloaming 3

Music journalist Michael Hann takes a look at the process of creating The Gloaming 3

Sheila Chandra recalls her first visit to Real World Studios

A blog by Sheila as part of Real World Tales, marking the label's 25th anniversary in 2014.