Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Lagos City Transport

MsMak requested this one yesterday.

As has been previously established, Nigeria had long been one of the world's most important markets for reggae music, and by the mid-80s reggae was the chief indigenous genre, largely displacing styles like funk, R&B and even highlife.

While most of the reggae artists of this period were rootsmen in the Marley-Tosh mold, there was also a slightly younger generation of raggamuffins who gravitated more towards the more current dancehall style then known as "rub-a-dub" and microphone heroes such as Frankie Paul, U-Roy, Eek-a-Mouse, Barrington Levy and especially Yellowman.

Too Low For Zero (or TLZ) were among the earliest exponents of this style to blow up in Nigeria and were significant for their integration of the "fast-chat" style made famous by UK dancehall MCs like Smiley Culture and Asher Senator. The big hit from their 1987 debut Emergency, was "Molue," a tribute to Lagos city's ubiquitous cadmium yellow sardine-can public buses.

(Man... A bus ride really was 20 kobo back then. That's crazy!)

Too Low For Zero - "Molue"
Too Low For Zero - "Cool Stylie"

(I had to dig pretty deep for this one, so I apologize if it's kind of rough on "Molue.")


Oro said...

Thank you again for those master pieces.



MsMak said...

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!! If you ever make it through Atlanta, pls send me an email. I definitely owe you a drink!

Comb & Razor said...

ha... well, i look forward to that, MsMak!