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Artist: ASAKAWA, MAKI
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $16.00
“A stunning survey of the 1970s heyday of great Japanese singer and countercultural icon Maki Asakawa (1942-2010). Deep-indigo, dead-of-night enka, folk, and blues, inhaling Billie Holiday and Nina Simone down to the bone. A traditional waltz abuts Nico-style incantation; defamiliarized versions of Oscar Brown Jr. and Bessie Smith collide with big-band experiments alongside poet Shūji Terayama; a sitar-led psychedelic wig-out runs into a killer excursion in modal, spiritual jazz. Existentialism and noir, mystery and allure, hurt and hauteur. With excellent notes by Alan Cummings and the fabulous photographs of Hitoshi Jin Tamura.” - Honest Jons. "Japans answer to Scott Walker, with a visual aesthetic and a death-decadent appeal that is straight out of the Keiji Haino songbook." - Volcanic Tongue.

Artist: ASAKAWA, MAKI
Title: s/t
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
Re-pressed. “A stunning survey of the 1970s heyday of great Japanese singer and countercultural icon Maki Asakawa (1942-2010). Deep-indigo, dead-of-night enka, folk, and blues, inhaling Billie Holiday and Nina Simone down to the bone. A traditional waltz abuts Nico-style incantation; defamiliarized versions of Oscar Brown Jr. and Bessie Smith collide with big-band experiments alongside poet Shūji Terayama; a sitar-led psychedelic wig-out runs into a killer excursion in modal, spiritual jazz. Existentialism and noir, mystery and allure, hurt and hauteur. With excellent notes by Alan Cummings and the fabulous photographs of Hitoshi Jin Tamura.” - Honest Jons. "Japans answer to Scott Walker, with a visual aesthetic and a death-decadent appeal that is straight out of the Keiji Haino songbook." - Volcanic Tongue.

Artist: COHRAN & THE HYPNOTIC BRASS ENSEMBLE, KELAN PHILIP
Title: s/t
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"Double LP version. For the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, the voyage to where they are now -- whether tearing up festivals from Glastonbury to Melbourne, or touring with Gorillaz, or recording their first album on Honest Jons -- has involved a necessary stepping away from their fathers shadow. Phil Cohran is the first to recognize this, happily allowing their sound -- heavy on the funk, with the urgency of hip-hop never far away -- to blossom. But likewise this album is for all of them a natural step. Recorded in Chicago in June 2011, the idea was beautifully simple -- "my music and their band." This is music that plumbs the depths and rings with joy." - Honest Jons.

Artist: DEMDIKE STARE/HYPE WILLIAMS
Title: Meet Shangaan Electro
Format: 12"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $12.00
"Essential installment in the Shangaan remix series, with futuristic pop duo Hype Williams turning out a mesmerizing tribute, lagging somewhere ages behind the party people, achingly soulful and lost. If you have to ask what the Demdike Stare side is like, then you dont deserve it." -Honest Jons.
SOLD OUT

Artist: HALO, LAUREL
Title: In Situ
Format: CD
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $16.00
"Spherical collections of stars form around black holes in situ; that is, locally to their cosmic neighborhoods. It is said that future space colonization will rely on sourcing supplies in situ. Construction in situ uses raw materials at the site: colossal sculptures such as Naqsh-e Rustam, the Leshan Giant Buddha, and Mount Rushmore were built in this fashion. Wild, organic machine grooves, with a minds eye on naked treetops and an early sunset. Melody breathes out from dubwise fx, percussion by turns sinewy and floating, sub blasts and stripped synth arrangements. Keys on air. Spacious, witty, melancholic, deadly." - Honest Jons.

Artist: HALO, LAUREL
Title: In Situ
Format: Double 12"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $19.00
“Spherical collections of stars form around black holes in situ; that is, locally to their cosmic neighborhoods. It is said that future space colonization will rely on sourcing supplies in situ. Construction in situ uses raw materials at the site: colossal sculptures such as Naqsh-e Rustam, the Leshan Giant Buddha, and Mount Rushmore were built in this fashion. Wild, organic machine grooves, with a minds eye on naked treetops and an early sunset. Melody breathes out from dubwise fx, percussion by turns sinewy and floating, sub blasts and stripped synth arrangements. Keys on air. Spacious, witty, melancholic, deadly.” - Honest Jons.

Artist: MANGANYI, FOSTER
Title: Ndzi Teke Riendzo No. 1
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"Foster Manganyi is a pastor from South Africa. His sublime music shares with Honest Jons compilation Shangaan Electro (HJR 052CD/LP) a startling palette of sampled, synthesized sounds -- the signature whistle and marimba, no bass, a little wonky high‐life -- and rough, fast, skittering drum patterns. Yet these are gospel songs, intensely sincere, brimming with aching, plaintive, mournful spirituality, without a trace of R&B, mangled or not; and however fractured, multi‐faceted and fresh the music comes across, the surging lines and harmonies of the support singers are unmistakably rooted in the traditional vocal music of South Africa. Just in time for Christmas, this is the reissue of a hit cassette from 2008." -Honest Jons

Artist: MMM/OLD APPARATUS
Title: Meet Tshetsha Boys And Shangaan Electro
Format: 12"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $12.00
"2012 repress. Characteristically murderous MMM disco-house -- sharp and succinct, witty and hedonistic, light and hard-grooving -- gallops away like a thoroughbred with the original marimba synth-line, and expertly excavates the fragile soulfulness of the Tshetshas singing. Threaded by the same marimbas, the Old Apparatus workout is a cavernous, atmospheric, stately stepper, reverberating and suspenseful, with splashing cymbals, horror vocals and miasmatic scraps of melody." -Honest Jons.

Artist: MOONDOG
Title: Moondog And His Friends
Format: 10"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $12.00
7 track 10" release, originally released by Epic. "Originally released in 1953 - a fantastic collection of recordings from the eccentric genius that was Moondog.  This mini-album features Moondogs pioneering techniques in tape overdubbing - he harmonises with himself on voice, double bass and home-made drums. Touches of his classical music education are underpinned by his signature and irresistible Native American rhythms.  Epic, prophetic, naive - seriously lovable music. 10" vinyl only release." Tracks: "Dragon´s Teeth - Voices of Spring," "Oasis," "Tree Frog - Be a Hobo," "Instrumental Round - Double Bass Duo - Why spend the dark night with you?," "Theme and Variations - Rim Shots," "Suite No. 1," Suite No. 2" - Honest Jons.

Artist: MOONDOG
Title: Playing Moondogs Music
Format: 10"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $11.00
"Recorded in 1955, released on his own short lived Moondog label. 4 tracks of manic saxophone and snare drum mayhem. You will not find an original of this anywhere. Blind from the age of 17, classically trained in music, Moondog aka Louis Hardin left the countryside in the late 1940s to busk on the streets of New York, playing percussion instruments of his own creation. He later became the darling of the NY arts & music set. He also recorded for Folkways, Woody Hermans Mars label, then Prestige and CBS." - Honest Jons. CD of this was previously issued in 2003 by Moondogs Corner.

Artist: MOONDOG
Title: Playing Moondogs Music
Format: 10"
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $14.00
"2015 repress of this 2004 reissue. Recorded in 1955, released on his own short-lived Moondog label. 4 tracks of manic saxophone and snare drum mayhem. You will not find an original of this anywhere. Blind from the age of 17, classically trained in music, Moondog aka Louis Hardin left the countryside in the late 1940s to busk on the streets of New York, playing percussion instruments of his own creation. He later became the darling of the NY arts and music set. He also recorded for Folkways, Woody Hermans Mars label, then Prestige and CBS." - Honest Jons.

Artist: MOONDOG
Title: The Viking of Sixth Avenue
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
2017 repress, originally released in 2005. Tremendous gatefold presentation and one of HJRs most impressive documents to date. "This new release from Honest Jons is the first overview of Moondogs amazing artistic life -- including recordings spanning from 1949 till 1995, with numerous 78s and various other vanished records revived for the first time (not to mention a couple of Weegee photographs!). Though the compilation is rooted in the decades Moondog regularly lived rough in New York City, performing on street corners -- the Viking Of Sixth Avenue -- at the same time it lays the musics claim to the future. It makes vivid sense of his inspiration of fans from Igor Stravinsky to Bob Dylan, Mr Scruff to Frank Zappa, Charlie Parker to Elvis Costello, Janis Joplin to Anthony And The Johnsons. As Moondog put it himself in 1989 -- I still love horned helmets and swords and spears. I like to feel that Im loyal to my past. I wouldnt want to be on the street anymore. But, you know, that led to a lot of things. Moondog was born Louis Thomas Hardin on May 26, 1916, in Marysville, Kansas. Noting the five-year-olds interest in percussion, his father -- an Episcopal minister -- took him to see an Arapaho Sun Dance. During the ritual the budding musician was allowed to sit on Chief Yellow Calfs lap and play the tom-tom. This experience -- and later playing tom-tom and flute with the Blackfoot tribe in Idaho at another Sun Dance -- would have a profound and lasting effect on the development of his own music and ideas. The American Indians have this basic beat, Moondog said in 1995, a heartbeat in two speeds -- a walking beat (in twos) and a running beat (in four). I use those rhythms to this day. In fact it just came to me recently that American Indian music is just so syncopated that any jazz musician -- especially in the swing era -- would see a clear connection between jazz and Indian music. Those songs are not improvised -- theyve been handed down from generation to generation -- theyre extremely old. I think of America as an Old World too, maybe older culturally than Europe. And elsewhere: Harmonically, my music is the same as Bach, Beethoven and Brahms; rhythmically, it goes back to the past -- the swing rhythms of the Indians. You really couldnt find anything more syncopated." - Honest Jons.

Artist: MOONDOG
Title: The Viking of Sixth Avenue
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
"2015 repress, originally released in 2005. Tremendous gatefold presentation and one of HJRs most impressive documents to date. "The first overview of Moondogs amazing artistic life -- including recordings spanning from 1949 till 1995, with numerous 78s and various other vanished records revived for the first time (not to mention a couple of Weegee photographs!)." - Honest Jons.

Artist: TREMBLING BELLS
Title: Abandoned Love
Format: LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $18.00
"LP version. Following on from the unanimous critical acclaim of their debut, Carbeth, Glasgow-based Trembling Bells second album deepens their signature synthesis of traditional folk forms with the romanticism of country music, the deceptive complexity of Medieval music and the swagger of classic rock. Anthemic visions of the British landscape as a fantastic and treacherous netherworld are set to vying country-style duets, Bowie-esque stomps and the mysterious, serpentine melodies of Earlie Musik. Baroque, stately, flowery, richly-orchestrated British folk, with moments of acid burn. Members include: Alex Neilson (Jandek, Taurpis Tula, Current 93, Six Organs Of Admittance, etc.), Lavinia Blackwall (Directing Hand), Simon Shaw (Scatter) and Mike Hastings (The Pendulums)." - Honest Jons.

Artist: TREMBLING BELLS
Title: Carbeth
Format: LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $17.00
"This is the hotly-tipped debut of new new-folk outfit, Trembling Bells, masterminded by protean drummer Alex Neilson, one of the UKs leading young improvisers. From the ashes of Scatter, a Glasgow-based collective which long anticipated the free-folk phenomenon, emerges a new song-based venture. Having served apprenticeships with some uniquely talented songwriters (Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Current 93, Alasdair Roberts, Baby Dee, Red Krayola, Six Organs Of Admittance, Josephine Foster, amongst them), Neilson sets out with the group to reanimate the hidden, mythic landscapes of Yorkshire and Glasgow (in particular) via a love of canonical rock, early music, and traditional folk. Featuring the diverse musical talents of medieval music scholar and psychedelic siren, Lavinia Blackwall, Venusian bluesman, Ben Reynolds, Lucky Luke progenitor Simon Shaw, plus trombonist George Murray, and viola player Aby Vuillamy from Scatter and the Bill Wells Group. Carbeth is absolutely sweeping, grandiose baroque-folk like a newly-minted Pentangle or Fairport Convention, but with strange keyboard/horn arrangements, and sometimes thunderous percussion. This isnt music for tatted lace-wearers, but for folk-rockers wearing sturdy woolen travelling capes for backwards horse-rides through a long-lost Britain." - Honest Jons.

Artist: TREMBLING BELLS
Title: The Constant Pageant
Format: LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $18.00
"Glasgow four‐piece Trembling Bells release their third slice of Caledonia dreaming, following on from the acclaimed Carbeth (HJR 043CD/LP) and Abandoned Love (HJR 047CD/LP). From its very first notes, The Constant Pageant flies the flag -- a banner of arms -- with a more confident, anthemic sound than ever before. Trembling Bells are 21st century troubadours who know their history, on a quest to connect with the core tradition of Song, and live deep within its mysteries. Medieval ballads, Frank Sinatra, Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen are amongst the guiding lights in a music that embraces British folk‐rock, American roots and electric psychedelia. The album title pays tribute to folkloric culture as "omnipresent in my thinking, and a source of personal joy and affirmation," says the Bells Alex Neilson. "A kind of florid, seething, creative wellspring that taints everything I do. Though, with this collection of songs, there were a number of other influences too. I think of traditional folk music as being like my first serious girlfriend, and all subsequent dalliances with other forms have been indelibly affected by it." Its a record of windswept bitterness and joyous elation: "Cold Heart Of Mine" is a paean to embattled lovers written in the shadow of Veronas ancient amphitheatre; "Where Do I Go From You" and "Torn Between Loves" describe doomed romance, dramatized by Mike Hastings screaming fuzz guitar. Theres also a strong sense of place. Neilsons native Yorkshire is the setting for "Goathland" -- home of folks first family, the McCarthy‐ Watersons (not to mention the BBCs Heartbeat) -- and "Otley Rock Oracle," in which a small Yorkshire market town is re‐imagined as a place of dead roads, where severed golden heads and cauliflower‐clouds clue in a young adept. Classical and early music come to the fore on "Colour Of Night" -- in which a medieval feast seems to be taking place behind the songs stately gavotte -- and the melancholic closer, "New Years Eves The Loneliest Night Of The Year," a tribute to favorite modern songwriters like Gordon Jenkins, Nelson Riddle and Hoagy Carmichael (with a cheeky aside about stolen Roman marbles). The Constant Pageant is a rhapsodic celebration of the power of Song, from one of the UKs most eclectic and inventive groups." -Honest Jons

Artist: V/A
Title: Bellyachers, Listen: Songs From East Africa, 1938-46
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"This is part 1 of a 2LP set of vinyl versions of Honest Jons Something Is Wrong: Vintage Recordings From East Africa CD compilation -- selections from an HMV run of more than 400 78s -- recordings made in Uganda and Kenya from the mid‐1930s to the mid‐1950s. Part 1 encompasses this material circa 1938-1946, entitled Bellyachers, Listen: Songs From East Africa, 1938-46. Three main types of performance are featured (not forgetting a lovely early Kenyan big‐band calypso, as if straight from the pen of Lord Kitchener). Most are minstrelsy, with songs ranging dazzlingly through subjects including loneliness and death, bastards and cut‐off trousers, trains of fire and no‐good rich people, a murder mystery and a drunken punch‐up at a rumba party in Kampala, and metaphorical cocks, hard pedalling and kettles which wont boil. Other minstrels accompany themselves on various sorts of lyre, and guitars carrying the influences of U.S. country music and Congolese 78s, the influx of Congolese musicians, and the harmonies of Christian church music. There are also tough, raw contributions on button‐accordion and taarab music from the Swahili‐speaking communities of the east coast, and Arab and Indian communities in ports like Mombasa, which had imported Egyptian and Indian music since almost the start of the century. Lilting melodies are provided by violins or Indian harmoniums, sometimes also an oud, along with Indian or Arab percussion. Luxuriously presented, in a gatefold sleeve, with full notes, including extensive translation and haunting photographs. Recordings brilliantly restored at Abbey Road." -Honest Jons

Artist: V/A
Title: Give Me Love: Songs of the Brokenhearted: Baghdad, 1925-1929
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"Double LP version, in deluxe gatefold sleeve.This is the second in Honest Jons series of albums exploring the earliest 78s held in the EMI Hayes Archive, featuring recordings from Baghdad, originally commissioned by The Gramophone Company -- soon before it became EMI.Restored and remastered at Abbey Road.Package includes a booklet with full translations, rare photographs, and notes -- including an extensive interview with a citizen of Baghdad who knew many of the musicians here personally."-Honest Jons

Artist: V/A
Title: Never the Same: Leave-Taking from the British Folk Revival 1970-1977
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
"Never The Same celebrates the lost years of British folk: the 1970s. As far as mass popularity goes, the folk scene most definitely peaked in the 1960s -- with Bert Jansch, Anne Briggs, Martin Carthy, Davy Graham and all. By the end of the sixties, according to conventional wisdom, it had morphed into folk rock (Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span) or singer-songwriters (Nick Drake and John Martyn), prior to disappearing into a netherworld of beards and real ale. But what the pop histories dont tell you is that the seventies were the real golden years for British folk music. The scene had gone underground, disappeared into the now totally unfashionable world of the folk clubs But the musicians whod come up in the heady years of the sixties hadnt gone away: they were just getting better and better. The trouble was the major record labels werent interested, not even the more folk-friendly indies like Island and Transatlantic. There was one exception, a man called Bill Leader. Leader was the man who had been behind the mixing desk on almost every major British folk record of the sixties, from Anne Briggs first EP to Davy Grahams Anji to Bert Janschs bedroom debut. In 1969, seeing a yawning gap in the market, he finally started his own label. Some of the names he signed up were already familiar on the folk scene -- like Lal and Mike Waterson from the legendary singing family The Watersons. Most, however, were new names, emerging stars from the folk club scene. There was Dick Gaughan, a shy Scotsman who had to be talked into making records; and Nic Jones from Essex, who was close to giving up the unequal struggle to make a living from music when Leader signed him up. Over the next ten years Leader put out a series of albums of a standard unmatched by any other major folk label. Not all of it was straight traditional folk. Leader was always open to experimentation and released albums as varied as the psych folk of Dave and Toni Arthur, the singer-songwriting of Rosie Hardman, and the elaborate arrangements of John Tams Muckram Wakes. He also released the peerless song suite Bright Phoebus by Lal & Mike Waterson, and two of the songs here represent this lost classic. But at the heart of the labels output were very simple virtues: great singers and great instrumentalists playing and singing the traditional music of Britain. So here, for the first time, is a compilation of the lost wonders of the Leader label, repository of the hidden history of British folk music." Artists: Lal Waterson, Nic Jones, Dorothy Elliott, Alistair Anderson, Dick Gaughan, Dave Burland, Aly Bain, The Boys of the Lough, Tony Rose." CD also available.

Artist: V/A
Title: Open Strings: 1920s Middle Eastern Recordings- New Responses
Format: 4LP Box Set
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $52.00
"Deluxe 4LP version in cardboard slip case with individual sleeves for each LP. Unbelievable packaging! This is the fourth release in Honest Jons series of albums exploring the earliest 78s held in the EMI Hayes Archive. Open Strings is a dazzling selection of virtuoso string-playing from Egypt, Iran, Iraq and Turkey, all recorded in the 1920s, and pretty much unheard ever since. In addition, Open Strings includes a disc of newly-commissioned responses to the themes in this music by underground luminaries committed to the drone such as Sir Richard Bishop of legendary Sun City Girls renown, West Coast psych-guitarist Ben Chasny aka Six Organs Of Admittance, UK folk-guitarist Rick Tomlinson aka Voice Of The Seven Woods, and Western Massachusetts raga-inspired duo, MV And EE. From resonant bow-drone, to frenetic fret-runs to delicate, circular acoustic musings to sitar fever-dreams, no matter the nationality, there is a resonance and truth in this music that is ancient, timeless and transcendent. Scorchers past and present, every one. Other artists include: Micah Blue Smaldone, Michael Flower, Charlie Parr, Bruce Licher, Paul Metzger, and Steffen Basho-Junghans." - Forced Exposure
SOLD OUT

Artist: V/A
Title: Something Is Wrong: Songs From East Africa, 1952-7
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"This is part 2 of a 2LP set of vinyl versions of Honest Jons Something Is Wrong: Vintage Recordings From East Africa CD compilation -- selections from an HMV run of more than 400 78s -- recordings made in Uganda and Kenya from the mid‐1930s to the mid‐1950s. Part 2 encompasses this material circa 1952-1957. Three main types of performance are featured (not forgetting a lovely early Kenyan big‐band calypso, as if straight from the pen of Lord Kitchener). Most are minstrelsy, with songs ranging dazzlingly through subjects including loneliness and death, bastards and cut‐off trousers, trains of fire and no‐good rich people, a murder mystery and a drunken punch‐up at a rumba party in Kampala, and metaphorical cocks, hard pedalling and kettles which wont boil. Other minstrels accompany themselves on various sorts of lyre, and guitars carrying the influences of U.S. country music and Congolese 78s, the influx of Congolese musicians, and the harmonies of Christian church music. There are also tough, raw contributions on button‐accordion and taarab music from the Swahili‐speaking communities of the east coast, and Arab and Indian communities in ports like Mombasa, which had imported Egyptian and Indian music since almost the start of the century. Lilting melodies are provided by violins or Indian harmoniums, sometimes also an oud, along with Indian or Arab percussion. Finally, there is the startling sound of four larger Ugandan ensembles, with songs about getting drunk and the relative merits of prostitution and motherhood, and the kings deportation by the British, deploying "the man who crunches rocks between his teeth." The style dismayed the missionary Robert Ashe, who visited the court of the Kabaka in 1884: "Our ears were deafened with the din which a motley band of musicians were making. Kettledrums and hand drums were rolling, horns braying, flutes screaming ... while blind musicians twanged away on their banjos, the whole making a most discordant harmony." Luxuriously presented, in a gatefold sleeve, with full notes, including extensive translation and haunting photographs. Recordings brilliantly restored at Abbey Road." -Honest Jons

Artist: V/A
Title: Something Is Wrong: Vintage Recordings From East Africa
Format: Double CD
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
"Thirty‐five precious, stinging selections from an HMV run of more than 400 78s -- recordings made in Uganda and Kenya from the mid‐1930s to the mid‐1950s. Three main types of performance are featured (not forgetting a lovely early Kenyan big‐band calypso, as if straight from the pen of Lord Kitchener). Most are minstrelsy, with songs ranging dazzlingly through subjects including loneliness and death, bastards and cut‐off trousers, trains of fire and no‐good rich people, a murder mystery and a drunken punch‐up at a rumba party in Kampala, and metaphorical cocks, hard pedalling and kettles which wont boil. Set to the deep grooving of an ndingidi one‐string fiddle, the very opening verses exemplify this fluency and range, within an account of the coming of the radio to the Ugandan capital. Some were angry and confused -- they could hear the talking but see no one, and would not believe that the voice came only from the loudspeakers. The singer SSekinomu weaves in asides about female creativity and the imprisonment of Prince Mawanda, the kings eldest brother, before the song ends as it began, with thanks and compliments for the new technology, to the Bazungu, the Whites. Other minstrels accompany themselves on various sorts of lyre, and guitars carrying the influences of U.S. country music and Congolese 78s, the influx of Congolese musicians, and the harmonies of Christian church music. There are also tough, raw contributions on button‐accordion: "Listening to this kind of Kikuyu song is more a feat of endurance than an aesthetic pleasure," noted the musicologist Hugh Tracey at the time. There is taarab music from the Swahili‐speaking communities of the east coast, and Arab and Indian communities in ports like Mombasa, which had imported Egyptian and Indian music since almost the start of the century. Lilting melodies are provided by violins or Indian harmoniums, sometimes also an oud, along with Indian or Arab percussion. Finally, there is the startling sound of four larger Ugandan ensembles, with songs about getting drunk and the relative merits of prostitution and motherhood, and the kings deportation by the British, deploying "the man who crunches rocks between his teeth." The style dismayed the missionary Robert Ashe, who visited the court of the Kabaka in 1884: "Our ears were deafened with the din which a motley band of musicians were making. Kettledrums and hand drums were rolling, horns braying, flutes screaming ... while blind musicians twanged away on their banjos, the whole making a most discordant harmony." Luxuriously presented, like a small hard‐cover book, with full notes, including extensive translation and haunting photographs; with the recordings brilliantly restored at Abbey Road." -Honest Jons

Artist: V/A
Title: Sprigs Of Time: 78s From The EMI Archive
Format: Double LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $21.00
"This is the third in Honest Jons series of albums exploring the earliest 78s held in the EMI Hayes Archive. Honest Jons has spent the last two years delving through more than 150,000 78 records in the temperature-controlled steel vaults of EMIs Archive in Hayes, Middlesex. Following studious compilations of West African and Iraqi music of the 1920s, the latest release in the Honest Jons Hayes Archive series is a sparkling late-summer lucky dip, Sprigs Of Time: 78s From The EMI Archive. An eccentric survey of the Hayes shelves, Sprigs Of Time is thirty tracks recorded between 1903 and 1957, everywhere from England (Percy Graingers recording of the title song, sung by Joseph Taylor in 1908) to Japan (the bewilderingly beautiful "Seigaiha," by the Japanese Imperial Palace Band, five years earlier). Organ rolls from Georgia run alongside Tamils impersonating motorized transport, and rumba from Beirut; 40s fado sits next to the songs of Bengali beggars. As with the other Hayes releases, the tracks have been restored at Abbey Road and are beautifully presented, with extensive contemporary photographs included. There are recognizable names (Joseph Taylor, the incomparable Fairuz, Mighty Sparrow and an uncredited Rubén González, singing lead vocals on "Rumba Negra") and extraordinary oddities (Vengopal Charis rather unfunny "Laughing" and the peculiarly affecting hand bells of "Gas All Clear"). Taken out of the library and put back on the turntable, every track here is remarkable; every one worth the saving." - Honest Jons.

Artist: V/A
Title: Sprigs Of Time: 78s From The EMI Archive
Format: CD
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $17.00
"This is the third in Honest Jons series of albums exploring the earliest 78s held in the EMI Hayes Archive. Honest Jons has spent the last two years delving through more than 150,000 78 records in the temperature-controlled steel vaults of EMIs Archive in Hayes, Middlesex. Following studious compilations of West African and Iraqi music of the 1920s, the latest release in the Honest Jons Hayes Archive series is a sparkling late-summer lucky dip, Sprigs Of Time: 78s From The EMI Archive. An eccentric survey of the Hayes shelves, Sprigs Of Time is thirty tracks recorded between 1903 and 1957, everywhere from England (Percy Graingers recording of the title song, sung by Joseph Taylor in 1908) to Japan (the bewilderingly beautiful "Seigaiha," by the Japanese Imperial Palace Band, five years earlier). Organ rolls from Georgia run alongside Tamils impersonating motorized transport, and rumba from Beirut; 40s fado sits next to the songs of Bengali beggars. As with the other Hayes releases, the tracks have been restored at Abbey Road and are beautifully presented, with extensive contemporary photographs included. There are recognizable names (Joseph Taylor, the incomparable Fairuz, Mighty Sparrow and an uncredited Rubén González, singing lead vocals on "Rumba Negra") and extraordinary oddities (Vengopal Charis rather unfunny "Laughing" and the peculiarly affecting hand bells of "Gas All Clear"). Taken out of the library and put back on the turntable, every track here is remarkable; every one worth the saving." - Honest Jons.

Artist: V/A
Title: Time Wept: Vocal Recordings from the Levant, 1906-1925
Format: LP
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $25.00
“Stunningly beautiful, poignant music from Bilād al-Shām -- "the countries of Damascus," known nowadays as Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine -- including performances from the very first recording sessions in the region. The legendary, moody Beirut singer Būlus Ṣulbān is here -- some historians have him singing before Egypts Pasha Ibrāhīm Bāshā during his military campaign in Syria, in 1841 -- and Ḥasība Moshēh, Jewish "nightingale of the Damascene gardens." Thurayyā Qaddūra from Jerusalem; Yūsuf Tāj, a folk singer from Mount Lebanon; Farjallāh Bayḍā, cousin to the founders of Baidaphon Records... Musical directors like the lutist Qāsim Abū Jamīl al-Durzī and the violinist Anṭūn al-Shawwā (followed by his son Sāmī); such virtuosi as the qanun-players Nakhleh Ilyās al-Maṭarjī and Yaqūb Ghazāla, and lutist Salīm Awaḍ. Even at the time, notwithstanding such brilliance, public music-making was frowned upon as morally demeaning, especially for women. Musical venues were generally dodgy. Ṣulbān once cut short a wedding performance for the Beiruti posh, after just one song, he was so disgusted with the attitude of his audience. "If I had to tell you about the catcalls," one commentator wrote about musical theater in Beirut, "the stomping of feet, the sound of sticks hitting the ground, the noise of the water-pipes, the teeth cracking watermelon seeds and pistachio nuts, the screams of the waiters, and the clinking of arak glasses on the tables, I would need to go on and on and on..." Also includes tracks by Aḥmad al-Shaykh, Naīm Semān, Ḥikmat Ḥajjār, Bāsīl Ḥajjār, Muḥyiddīn Bayūn, Muḥammad al-Āshiq, Aḥmad al-Mīr, Iliās Shahwān, and Yūsuf al-Naḥḥāl.” - Honest Jons.

Artist: V/A
Title: To Scratch Your Heart: Early Recordings From Istanbul
Format: 4LP Boxset
Label: Honest Jons
Country: UK
Price: $54.00
"Luxuriously packaged deluxe 4LP version in cardboard slip case with individual sleeves for each LP. Honest Jons presents a package drawn from recordings made in Istanbul by the Gramophone Company and HMV, during the first three decades of the 20th century. Amidst the ruins of the Ottoman Empire, it crosses and mixes the folk and classical heritage of Turks, Greeks, Armenians and Gypsies, Muslims, Christians and Jews, urbanites and country‐people, and the demands of tradition and modernity, musical improvisation, composition and system. Most of the singers are hafız, versed in a musical reading of the Koran, and renowned for mastery of the exalted, improvisatory form of the gazel. There are several magnificent examples here, by legendary artists. Three of these gazelhans beautifully interpret folk songs, and another contributor, the folklorist Ağyazar Efendi, sings a long Armenian air with utter authenticity, but in the style of a gazel. Exemplifying the new political freedoms of the Republic, there are two heart‐melting female vocal performances of a kind of art‐song called sarkı. Also featured is the taksim, a kind of improvisation in which one‐off musical fireworks, designed to ravish the listeners soul, illuminate deep fluency in the makam. A whos-who of the pre‐eminent instrumentalists of this first half-century of Turkish recording, in performances which are simply stunning, breathtaking, exquisite and other‐worldly. The music here is so transfixing, intensely devotional and sublimely beautiful, that some contemporary listeners thought they were levitating. " -Honest Jons

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