Hallelujah Chicken Run Band, Kare Nanhasi, 1974

"During HCR's most active years Rhodesia, as Zimbabwe was called then, was between its British colonial past and full independence. HCR was one of the first modern groups to sing in the Shona language - which most of the White minority government could not understand – this in itself was a major act of liberation and protest against the Rhodesian government. Alongside the occasional love song the compilation, political songs and songs of liberation prevail. " 

Eventually the government began to listen in more detail to the anti establishment lyrics, this led to lead singer Thomas Mapfumo being imprisoned in 1979 after releasing "Hokoyo" (Watch Out). Large demonstrations in protest of his arrest and an inability to trump up charges against him forced the government to release him after three months.

There is a sense of urgency on this track, that combined with the Staccato guitars really drives the rhythm forward, Mapfumo's vocals sit aloft perfectly and then there are those blazing horns...  

Find this track and all the others on the 'Frisson' playlist. 

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Oliver Batho