Field Recordings

Potentially volumes could (and have) been written on this stuff. A big nod must go to Richard Henderson's Field Recordings Primer in The Wire of February 1998. Henderson's selection is near perfect because he concentrates on what is WEIRD, the "other", music from a gone world.

That primer sent me scurrying off to find these LPs - if that sounds superficial, in fairness to me (before the days of Discogs) I had to toil in record shops looking for them. I think I own every one he names now. A few, like the Gbaya and Aka pygmies recordings and the Music In The World of Islam I had beforehand. And I've added a couple of selections here too - the lovely Mandang New Guinea recording which David Toop put out on his Quartz label - and really for its rhizomatic function the Brian Jones Joujouka LP.

I've taken the unusual step of including two tracks from four of the LPs. This isn't actually because I have any shortage of these field recordings. Over the years I've acquired many many. It just felt right. So often these wonderful collections cover massive sonic territory.

Obvious "hits" include "Abu Zelef" (sampled on "Regiment" on My Life In The Bush of Ghosts), "Ketjack (excerpt)" and "Clementine". The story with the latter goes that Colin Turnbull was ushered in front of the village elders to hear their oldest and most cherished "secret" song - and whaddayaknow it's "Clementine". That tells you all you need to know about authentic music.


Savannah Rhythms: Bob Dyula Tribe - Allah Man Dogo
Tantras of Gyuto - Mahakala
The Pygmies of The Ituri Forest - Songs of the Alima
Aka Pygmies -  Deux Chantefables l'Oiseau
Aka Pygmies - Danse Après Avoir Tué un Éléphant (Monzoli)
Turkano Indians of Colombia - Elders chanting origin myths
Musique Du Burundi: François Muduga - Chant avec cithare
Musique Du Burundi: Tambours royaux  - Ingoma
Music In The World of Islam: Dunya Yunis - Abu Zeluf
Music from the morning of the world: Sekehe Senggong - Frog Song
Music from the morning of the world: Gamelan Angklung -Ketjack Dance
Pêcheurs De Perles Et Musiciens Du Golfe Persique - Chants Des Pêcheurs De Perles, Muhamaq (Bahrein)
Music of the Rainforest Pygmies - Honey Gathering Song
Music of the Rainforest Pygmies - Clementine
Sacred Flute Music From New Guinea - [Jarvan] Awar
Musique Gbáyá / Chants À Penser - Naa-Kore
Brian Jones presents the Pipes of Pan at Joujouka: Master Musicians of Joujouka - Joujouka