Thursday 6 May 2021

BHUNDU BOYS - BBC Sessions 1986 (Flac)

In the Ken Garner book 'In Session Tonight' - which details the BBC Radio 1 sessions over a 25-year period since their inception in 1967 - DJ Andy Kershaw comments that Zimbabwe's, Bhundu Boys "Were really the ambassadors for African music in Britain." 

Few who heard those early sessions and on-air eulogies by Andy Kershaw & John Peel will ever forget what an incredible impact they made on the UK music scene. This at a time when Paul Simon's Graceland album was bringing the music and artists of South Africa to a worldwide audience.

The Bhundu Boys launched their first major label album 'True Jit' at an HMV shop in 1987. The group's British success owed much to John Peel's championing of the band, recording their first session in July 1986. This post compiles the BBC sessions from 1986. 

The band recorded one further session on 3 March 1987 and it was broadcast nine days later on the Andy Kershaw show. (No! I don't have it)

"About a month ago or perhaps five weeks ago I went to a club in London to see the Bhundu Boys play and was really genuinely enormously pleased with them, thought they were wonderful. I said at the time rather pretentiously but I think accurately really, the music they play seems just to flow up out of the ground and through them and to us the listeners. As I say I was very taken with them and enormously pleased that we were able to get them in to record a session for this programme.

...the title of the first one from the Bhundu Boys translates as 'Wings' (Mahenga)....How wonderful it is, still to be able to play sessions like this for you." .........John Peel, 14 July, 1986

BHUNDU BOYS - 1986 BBC sessions (FM)

John Peel session #1

01. Kuroja Chete
02. Chemedza Vana
03. Writing On The Wall
04. Let's Work Together
05. Manhenga

The Hippodrome, Golders Green, London, UK.
Recorded on 6th July 1986 / First broadcast on BBC Radio 1 FM 14th July 1986

John Peel session #2

06. Ndoita Sei?
07. Rugare
08. My Foolish Heart
09. Jig-A-Jig

BBC radio studios, London, UK
Recorded on 21st December 1986 / First broadcast on BBC Radio 1 FM 7th January 1987

Andy Kershaw, Whistle Test

10. Let's Work Together
11. Interview with Biggie Tempo (by Andy Kershaw)
12. Chemedza Vana (fades out)
13. Hupenyu Hwangu  (b/cast much later)

BBC Wood Lane TV studios, London, UK  
Recorded live on 20th September 1986 (as part of 'Rock Around The Clock', BBC TV & FM extravaganza)

BBC Radio 1 FM > Roof Aerial > Marantz ST151L Tuner > Aiwa ADF770 3-Head Cassette Deck > TDK-SA (Type II) cassette tape

Conversion to FLAC: Master Type II source tape > Aiwa ADF770 Cassette Deck (play) > SB Extigy soundcard > CoolEdit Pro 2.1 > WAV > TLH > FLAC

(All master FM recordings, time: 50 minutes)