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Uncovering Somalia's forgotten music of the 1970s (aljazeera.com)
84 points by miraj on Aug 27, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 20 comments

Cool share. If anyone has more links to these songs, plz share here. The article just has one.

EDIT. Actually, the Soundcloud its from has a ton: https://soundcloud.com/ostinatorecords

Beautiful music! It would be wonderful to have a website where you could choose a region or a country, a time period, and it automatically generates a relevant playlist.

There's a site called Radiooooo that does pretty much exactly that.


Looks promising, doesn't work for me on mobile but I'll check out the desktop version later. Thanks for the link.

Thank you! A real gem of a website!

Man I miss this music! What a trove!

I've received my copy of the CD a couple of days ago. Great music and the back story is incredible! According to the the liner notes this is the blog that inspired the whole project: http://tix-iyo-tiraab.blogspot.com

It's a small blog full of awesome Somali music from the 1970s and 1980s.

The Wire has more tracks from the same release. All good, but who'd believe that the last track by Waaberi Band is from Somalia of 1969!: https://www.thewire.co.uk/audio/tracks/listen-to-tracks-from...

A CD of this music on Amazon and you can listen to samples:


You can listen to the whole thing — and buy it in lossless format — on Bandcamp: https://ostinatorecords.bandcamp.com/album/sweet-as-broken-d...

Happily listening to the FLACs now - though given that the tracks were recovered from old cassettes (and recorded on fairly limited rigs in the first place) I am not sure they really need to be in a lossless format...

I personally know vik, knew of the project, and so was so excited to see this article here by coincidence. He's personally investing great effort to rescue music that otherwise wouldnt be heard. Super recommend his other albums (one is like a Haitian Buena Vista).

Tangentially related, but it really makes me sad that what.cd died. It was a haven for these types of obscure music collections, tens of thousands of albums worth that simply aren't available via streaming services. I hope some sort of service finds a way to operate legally while still rewarding rarity like what did, otherwise more things like this will just be lost to the sands of time.

Between Discogs and RateYourMusic there are plenty of rare albums there, with track listings etc. but there's stuff that I find which isn't on either of them, and I wonder what I could have found on what.cd, if I had an account, and indeed downloaded beacuse many of these obscure albums were limited release or completely out of print for a decade or more.

What a find. Thank you.


If I may?

Somalia is a beautiful country. I've been twice, the second time was when I was able to spend six months.

While I didn't go to an music venues, there was still a great deal of music. Yes, people sing and dance - even when they are oppressed. I was last there to hand out aid and it was beautiful to see how people with so little, to the point of requiring aid, were still so generous.

What irks me is the people who try to claim that Somalia is a land without government. No, they have lots of government. People just don't recognize this and they are illegitimate. You may know them by another name, warlords.

These fiefdoms have everything from taxation to laws, to paperwork and permits, and more. They are very much a governed people. In some areas, we even needed permission from multiple groups in order to travel.

Anyhow, if you get the chance, go. Before I went, I got a phone call from some guy who worked for the State Department. They used some choice words to tell me that my government would be unable to help should something go wrong. Yeah, it's a dangerous place but it was worth the risks. It really is a beautiful place that is full of (mostly) wonderful people.

Small question. The call you got, was it from the State Department of your country or from Somalia?

My country. It was from the US State Dept. They wanted me to come in and talk to them, after I'd asserted that I was still going. I didn't. The guy on the phone got unreasonably angry with me. I'd no intentions to ask for government help, regardless of outcome. I was quite willing to accept any/all risks.

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