When Fela Anikulapo-Kuti died in August 1997,
Nigeria lost one of its most controversial and inspirational
cultural figures. Here, the Africa-based writer Lindsay Barrett
maps the extraordinary trajectory of Fela's life, detailing the
emergence of his patented brand of Afrobeat, his anarchic
lifestyle, and the ongoing battles with the Nigerian authorities.
This feature was originally published in The Wire 169
Robin Rimbaud aka Scanner hails the new
community spirit of social networking sites that encourage direct
communications between artists and listeners.
This month: alienated from her computer,
baffled by download culture, Amanda Brown laments the rise of the
faceless uploader and the attendant decline of the DIY
A regular opinion column on the fallout from
music’s shifting economy. This month: After committing
‘professional suicide’ by giving away his back catalogue online,
Bob Ostertag wonders how the web is changing our understanding of
music for good.
Following Chris Cutler's response to Kenneth
Goldsmith's filesharing Epiphany, David Keenan looks at the fallout
from music's shifting economy, from the perspective of his webshop
and record shop Volcanic Tongue.
Gil Scott-Heron, with and without his
longtime partner Brian Jackson, has long refused to fit into
anyone's market plan for a soul-jazz singer. Nathan West and Mark
Sinker discuss his recorded legacy. This article originally
appeared in The Wire 108 (February 1993).
This article originally appeared in The
Wire 11 (January 1995).
Does the new technology of mix 'n' splice
mean the end of Popular Song as we know it? Or the start of a new
open-ended dance afterlife? The death of the Original, or the birth
of the infinite version? David Toop looks/locks into a brand new
time lapse. This article originally appeared in The Wire
103 (September 1992). David Toop reflects on writing the essay
Early works, the emergence of the Lydian
Theory, the Workshop and associated recordings discussed by Max
Harrison. This article first appeared in The Wire 3
The output of George Russell's Sextet,
discussed by Max Harrison. This article first appeared in The
Wire 4 (Summer 1983).
A three-day conference, sponsored by The
Wire and organised by the Centre for Contemporary Music
Cultures at Goldsmiths, University of London on the Greek composer
coinciding with the tenth anniversary of his death. Scholars,
researchers and musicians will present papers and participate in
panels, alongside a programme of concerts and workshops. London
Southbank Centre, 1–3 April.
In its original incarnation, Electro was
black science fiction teleported to the dancefloors of New York,
Miami and LA; a super-stoopid fusion of video games, techno-pop,
graffiti art, silver space suits and cyborg funk. Now that Electro
is back, David Toop provides a thumbnail guide to the music that
posed the eternal question: "Watupski, bug byte?" This article
originally appeared in The Wire 145 (March 1996).
Read an extended version of Will Montgomery's
Cross Platform article on Japanese sound artist Toshiya Tsunoda,
master of the art of field recording.
An occasional series in which we offer a
beginner’s guide to the must-have recordings of some of our
favourite musicians (and music). This month, Richard Henderson
enters the preternatural realm of field recordings. This article
originally appeared in The Wire 168 (February 1998).
A full collection of tributes to the late
musician, including a number of pieces which were not published in
Web only Epiphany by The Wire's intern Imogen
Panda Bear, whose Person Pitch album
was voted third in our Top 50 Albums of 2007 chart, gives his
verdict of the year just gone
Immerse yourself in mid-80s pirate nostalgia
with mastermix.org says Jason Gross
African Music blogs offer a conduit to the
mass of African music that remains unreleased in the West says