The Lafayette Afro Rock Band
“Listen – The Lafayette Afro Rock Band – Hihache – MP3″
As previously mentioned, I communicate to you via the powers of the interwebs, and a wholly unexpected wi-fi connection at the hospital. By the time you read this (sometime Monday AM) I may very well be under the knife yet again, hopefully getting re-stented, and de-tubed so that I may walk the earth freely once again.
As you may have guessed, being in the hospital sucks out loud, but I must admit that the suckitude has been dialed down a tad since (with the company of my lovely wife) I am now able to sit here, write and listen to music. It’s not exactly the comforts of home, but it’ll have to do for now.
The other day, post procedure/pre-rehospitalization, I – like a suburban rube – was out mowing the lawn in the hot sun, and decided that I would take the old iPod with me to alleviate the endless buzz of the mower pounding my eardrums. Whilst I was nearing the end of the job, and my energy/patience,a very tasty drum break, followed by several minutes of stylish Afro-funk poured out of the phones and into my brain, and for a short while the lawn was all but forgotten, taking a back seat to the groove.
The tune in question is (not coincidentally) the song I bring you today, ‘Hihache’ by the Lafayette Afro Rock Band.
Though I had this tune on a CD comp for some years, the vinyl only came into my hands in the last few months via a very nice haul at what first appeared to be an inauspicious edition of the Asbury Lanes garage sale. I walked into the room, saw almost no sellers (or buyers), but fortunately decided to stick around and dig. Good thing too because I walked back out into the sunshine that day with an armload of tasty vinyl, part of which was the ‘Voudounon’ LP by the Lafayette Afro Rock Band.
A French band, formed (I kid you not) in Long Island, NY, the LARB made some of the tastiest Afro-funk ever to roll down the pike. Formed in 1970 as the Bobby Boy Congress, they were rechristened in 1972 (after Boy departed to go solo). They recorded ‘Hihache’ in 1974,and thanks to that mighty break, the record soon became a DJ/hip-hop staple, eventually being sampled numerous times (see list at the end of the post*).
However – big “however” here – unlike so many “break” records, ‘Hihache’ has the quality and stying power to keep it’s solid groove going for almost seven minutes, long past the break. In addition to the rock solid percussion, there’s some righteous electric piano, fuzzed out guitar and of course blazing horns. ‘Hihache’ is pure dancefloor gold, and should I recover in time to honor my DJ commitments at the end of July (more on that later), I can promise you that I will drop ‘Hihache’ right next to my other Afro-fave, ‘New Bell’ by Manu Dibango (and if I’m in the groove, maybe some Geraldo Pino).
As it is, pull down the ones and zeros, slap on your cans and shake your sweaty ass all over the place to this one.
*Records sampling ‘Hihache’ by the Lafayette Afro Rock Band
Aimee Mann’s “That’s Just. . .”
Angela Winbush’s “Treat You Right”
Biz Markie’s “Nobody Beats the Biz”
Biz Markie’s “Studda Step”
Black Moon’s “Buck ‘Em Down”
Bulldog Breaks’s “Bring it on Down”
Channel Live’s “Build and Destroy”
Coolio’s “Hands on my N*gger”
De la Soul’s “Oodles of O’s”
Digital Underground’s “No Nose Job”
DJ Honda’s “Biz Freestyle”
Gravediggaz’s “2 Cups of Blood”
Hurricane’s “Comin Off”
Kris Kross’s “It’s Alright”
LL Cool J’s “Jinglin’ Baby”
Mad Flava’s “Bump Ya Head”
Mad Lion’s “Double Trouble”
Montell Jordan’s “This is How We Do It”
Nas’s “The Foulness”
Naughty by Nature’s “Ghetto Bastard”
Naughty by Nature’s “It’s On”
Nice & Smooth’s “No Delayin’”
Original Flavor’s “I Like It”
Public Enemy’s “Can’t Truss It”
Souls of Mischief’s “Dirty D’s Theme”
Stezo’s “Freak the Funk”
Wu-Tang Clan’s “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nothin’ to Fuck wit’”