Talazo Fuji Music Party!

King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal I

Released 24 June 2022

  1. Fuji Collections
  2. Talazo
  3. The Ultimate
  4. Consolidation
  5. Eyo
  6. Series

Liner notes

Originally released on the WOMAD Select imprint label in 1997

Talazo fuji music is big music, made by many drummers. Big messages. Big confidence. Dense, throbbing rhythms that carry the pulse of West Africa. This is Nigeria’s most popular style of modern music and King Waisu Ayinde Marshal is its brightest star.

Born Waisu Ayinde Adewale Omogbolahan Anifowoshe in Lagos in 1957, he started singing with ‘Were’ groups as a young boy, and at 17 joined the band of Fuji music star Sikiru Ayinde Barrister as a roadie— an opportunity to be intimately involved with both great music and top-flight musicians.

In 1976 his boss travelled to Britain for two months with the band, leaving Wasiu Ayinde with nothing to do, so he decided to form his own band. Starting on the party circuit, he slowly rose through the ranks until he achieved what he set out to do— to start a revolution.

Taking the dynamic dance floor sakara rhythm, he simplified the music, brought in more drums like the congo and sakara, and created the Talazo beat. In the process he reinvented Fuji music.

Dispensing with the philosophical tales and proverbs of his competitors’ music, Wasio Ayinde concentrates on a street-oriented youth beat dominated by drums, drums, and more drums.

Recording this album was a triumph of production finesse working against the clock. The band were delayed in London and arrived eight hours late for the one-night session, but producer David Bottrill calmly placed his microphones among the 22 musicians in record time and rolled ape. Wasiu Ayinde conducted the massed musicians with verse— a Barenboim of the beat. The studio audience rose to its feet. On time, in time, a good time— another Talazo Fuji had started.

Reviews

  • King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal, who learned his trade as a roadie with Barrister, gives us a symphony of rhythm, a brilliant set of intertwining drums that never sounds overloaded or heavy-handed, providing great freedom for his sublime, aching vocals. Given dignity and resonance by discreet keyboard interventions, the effect is almost elegiac. Sandy Nelson, eat your heart out. Folk Roots

Listen

Credits

The Musicians:
King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal I: lead vocals (band leader)
Fatai Ishola: lead sakara (clay and bamboo drum)
Wasiu Aromasodun: sakara
Kayode Ogunseye: tambourine
Abayomi Bashir: drums
Fatai Adeyiga: omele sakara
Jelili Balogun: chorus singer
Bashiru Akinyemi: chorus singer
Bode Arowolo: maracas
Yekini Ayandiya: iyalu (leading drum)
Kunle Muraina: gangan (talking drum)
Akeem Salami: omele gangan
Kazeem Alabi: omele gangan
Doxolie Diya-ojo: keyboard
Ismaila Olumade: bata (hourglass-shaped drum)
Shakiru Awofolu: gong

Adeleke Adebogun: engineer
Ambali Adetunji: co-ordinator
Dayo Olomu: personal assistant

Produced and recorded by: David Bottrill, assisted by Sam Gibson. Mixed by: David Bottrill. Recorded during the 1995 Recording Week at Real World Studios, Box, Wiltshire, UK.

A Real World Design
Graphic design: Tristan Manco
Series design: Nick Robertson
Front cover photography: David White
All other photography: Stephen Lovell-Davis
Sleeve notes: John Ingham

Series direction: Thomas Brooman, Amanda Jones
Art direction: Michael Coulson
Production: Julie Merrifield
Distribution: Sue Johnson

All songs written by King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal I

Special thanks to everybody in the studio, particularly the producers for their patience throughout the recording, all the travelling party, Vix Tunji Olumegbon, Baya King, Yomi Maja, Olasinmi Akindele and Bola Point One.

Further Listening

  • Faso Denou

    Farafina

    Released 08 May 1993

    This electrifying West African percussion ensemble deliver a live session of breath-taking speed and skill. Farafina's music has a polyrhythmic structure that is complex and yet immediately clear, but above all the music is an irresistible driving force to dance.
  • Tambolero

    Totó la Momposina

    Released 25 June 2015

    You don't normally get the chance to go back in time and reimagine a classic album like La Candela Viva but creating Tambolero has been a challenge and a delight. It’s become a celebration of Totó's career: six decades dedicated to preserving, researching and developing an ancestral tradition, the identity of a people, passed down through the generations. 

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