Welcome to African Cassettes
African Cassettes is an online cassettography dedicated to documenting African music released on cassettes. Currently the project is in an early development stage. A list of all cassettes included until now can be seen here. Currently new cassettes are not being added on a regular base because of administrative and technical reasons. The project is based at and supported by the African Music Archives (AMA) and the Ernst-Wilhelm-Müller-Stiftung at Institute of Ethnology and African Studies the University of Mainz.
Over a period of more than 40 years cassette albums were the predominant media for publishing popular music in most African countries, i.e. the majority of commercially produced music was released on cassettes. Thus, music produced and released on cassettes represent an immense treasure of cultural heritage. Despite the relevance and importance of this heritage few information about the sheer quantity and the content of cassette albums is available. Although projects on specific genres or with a regional focus by highly engaged and knowledgeable enthusiasts fill these gaps partly, there is no compendium or catalogue which contains information on all cassette albums produced in African countries in a standardized way. Thus, there is a need for a register or a catalogue of cassette albums produced in African countries.
This project is the attempt to fill this gap with the creation of a cassettography of African Music Albums. Although I had followed the idea to start this kind of catalogue for a couple of years this project just started two months ago, thanks to the support of the African Music Archives and the Ernst-Wilhelm-Müller-Stiftung at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. Currently the cassettography is in a test phase where ideas and implementation are being tested. The cassette albums used in the project are found in a private collection or in the AMA at Mainz.
At this stage the cassettography contains entries on cassette albums from 30 countries, biographical entries on the artists and bands who appear on the cassettes, entries on authors and composers of songs, as well as entries on the companies which produced and released the cassettes (such as music labels, music shops, etc.). The data in the entries is based on information provided on the cover of or on the cassettes themselves as well as from publications in the internet (online magazines, newspapers, etc.) and printed books.
The project is using open sources software (MediaWiki) in order to be sustainable in the long term. Albums are continuously added to the cassettography, more or less on a daily base and descriptive and documentation texts will be continuously revised and amended as well.
Please note that this is an academic non-profit project. Comments that contribute to the improvement and enrichment of this project are very welcome. You find our email address below.
A note about the naming of the albums
Many cassette albums don't have a title. Therefore for all albums without title we use the title of the first song on Side A as pro forma title for the cassette.
The 36 newest albums
Please note that the pictures are linked to the covers only. The cassette is linked to via the title below the picture.
Yä-Wällo Lalibäla Kinät by Yä-Wällo Lalibäla Kinät (Ethiopia)
Säti Yəräbräbälu by Nəgəsti Ḥayälom (Ethiopia)
Balilay by Walälləññ Azzänä, Wärq Yanṭäfu Amsalu, Mammo Č̣ala (Ethiopia)
Täzkəro Nəsäma'ətatna by Wäddi Tuḫul (Eritrea)
Arore by Mähammäd Awwäl (Ethiopia)
Ijo yoyo by Alhaji Prof. Kollington Ayinla (Nigeria)
Wazee wa Safari by Shikamoo Jazz Band (Tanzania)
Chela Chela Vol. 1 by Shikamoo Jazz Band (Tanzania)
Naǧm ar-Ribāt Ḥaǧīb by Ḥaǧīb (Morocco)
Stati by As-Stātī ʿAbdalazīz (Morocco)
Kam Ndiik by Mbaye Ndiaye (Senegal)
Thiante Gui by Assane Mboup et le M'Bouba Dialy (Senegal)
Daara-J by Daara-J (Senegal)
Daw Thiow by Positive Black Soul (Senegal)
Sahra maʿ Zīdān Ibrāhīm, Ismāʿīl Ḥasab Ad-Dāʾim by Zīdān Ibrāhīm and Ismāʿīl Ḥasab Ad-Dāʾim (Sudan)
Al-Maṭrabiya Nāǧa al-Ǧarīfāwiya bz Nāǧa al-Ǧarīfāwiya (Sudan)
Diapason (Alioune Mbaye Nder) Volume 1 by Alioune Mbaye Nder (Senegal)
Abbäbä Fəqadu-nna Mulu'aläm Däggu by Abbäbä Fəqadu and Mulu'aläm Däggu (Ethiopia)
Kətt Dəmṣawiyan a compilation from Ethiopia
Taara by Baaba Maal (Senegal)
Amarya da Ango by Haruna Uji (Nigeria)
Ina Asalin Hausa Bakwai by Alhaji Musa Dan Kwairo (Nigeria)
Taurarin Makada by Alhaji Dr. Mamman Shata and Alhaji Aliyu Dandawo (Nigeria)
Moye Le by Mawa Kante et Sandali Kante (Guinea)
Nell Fess by Sunu Flavor (Senegal)
Moussoulou by Oumou Sangare (Mali)
Kassikoun by Kene Star & A. Diabate (Mali)
Addis Abäba näw betu by Hirut Bäqqälä (Ethiopia)
Ǝndiyaw zəmm by Hirut Bäqqälä (Ethiopia)
Šəta honäh qoyyäññ by Hirut Bäqqälä (Ethiopia)
Guinhè RAP Compilation Vol 1 a compilation from Guinea
Deweneti by Coumba Gawlo (Senegal)
Gambia 3rd Day by Jaliba Kuyateh & Kumareh Band (Gambia)
Ǝndih nat wäy Gondär by Maläfiya Täkka-nna Adanä Täkka (Ethiopia)
Bäkätämaw by Tewodros Taddäsä (Ethiopia)
Mayɛ Ɛnkyene by Obibini Takyi (Ghana)
Cassettes arranged by country
|Cassettes from Algeria|
|Cassettes from Angola|
|Cassettes from Burundi|
|Cassettes from Cameroon|
|Cassettes from Congo|
|Cassettes from Djibouti|
|Cassettes from DRC/Zaïre|
|Cassettes from Ethiopia|
|Cassettes from Eritrea|
|Cassettes from Gabon|
|Cassettes from Gambia|
|Cassettes from Ghana|
|Cassettes from Guinea|
|Cassettes from Ivory Coast|
|Cassettes from Kenya|
|Cassettes from Liberia|
|Cassettes from Madagascar|
|Cassettes from Mali|
|Cassettes from Morocco|
|Cassettes from Nigeria|
|Cassettes from São Tomé and Príncipe|
|Cassettes from Senegal|
|Cassettes from Somalia|
|Cassettes from South Africa|
|Cassettes from Sudan|
|Cassettes from Tanzania|
|Cassettes from Togo|
|Cassettes from Tunisia|
|Cassettes from Uganda|
|Cassettes from Zimbabwe|
AMA - African Music Archive
The African Music Archive at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz is collecting modern African music and makes it available to science and research. It hosts music on all kinds of media: shellac and vinyl records, as well as audio and video cassettes, CDs and DVDs. It currently hosts a unique collection of 15,000 sound recordings from the 1940s until the present. Beyond academic work, AMA seeks to make knowledge about African music accessible to a broader public.
'African Cassettes' is maintained by Andreas Wetter.
You can write an email to the project.