Youtube: the Audio Library for Congolese and Other Music

“Trawling through Vincent’s collection we pulled out 10 contemporary and classic grooves straight from the streets of Kinshasa. Many of these records are released as limited pressings and finding them can be an arduous task. Our best advice is to try the specialist African music outlet Stern’s.”

Congo, where rumba meets r’n’b — Josh Surtees, The Guardian

The article goes on to describe the ten tracks, each with a Youtube link discreetly included for those who don’t have time to scour Stern’s.

I would never have predicted that a video site would become something like a rough-and-ready universal library of audio.

Here’s Wendo Kolosoy, described in the article as the grandfather of Congolese rhumba, performing Marie Louise:

When I was DJ-ing at WCBN there was some disagreement over the probity of playing Youtube clips over the airwaves. The Program Director felt, reasonably enough, that DJs should strive for highest audio quality and to showcase the extraordinary, vinyl-anchored WCBN music library. I’m not sure exactly how that discussion resolved itself, but I don’t doubt that people will still fire up Youtube when they catch a tricky request or just can’t find a special track in the stacks. Because they can.

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