Audio
Glitterbeat Records.

Edikanfo, a Brian Eno-Produced 1981 Ghanaian Classic Gets Reissued

Premiere: Hear the captivating blend of highlife and afro-funk from Glitterbeat Records' reissue of Edikanfo's The Pace Setters.

Back in 1981, a debut record from a young Ghanaian eight-piece group called Edikanfo began turning heads. People were drawn to The Pace Setters album for its infectious blend of highlife and afro-funk, but also due to the record's producer: Brian Eno.

Eno, at the time, had been looking towards West Africa and the likes of Fela Kuti for inspiration, some of which he took to his work on Talking Heads' Remain in Light and David Byrne on My Life in the Bush of Ghosts.

"Faisal Helwani (Edikanfo's manager) invited me to Ghana as an 'international observer' for the biennial Festival of African Song and Dance, which was that year to be held in Sunyani," Brian Eno tells OkayAfrica, "I accepted—having spent the previous few years immersed in Fela's early albums and the previous few months stuck into John Miller Chernoff's book African Rhythm and African Sensibility. I was very keen to hear some African music in situ. Prior to the visit I knew little about Edikanfo. The original arrangement with Faisal was that I would produce the band and in return they would play some things for me and, in due course, I'd work over them."

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