When I moved to town last Fall, one super nice friend handed me a small bundle of awesome items as a "welcome to Detroit" package. Among them was the rare LP Kins by Griot Galaxy (B+W, 1981).
For a list of 33 1/3 essential Detroit albums, I wrote about that record and I said this thing: Led by poet Faruq Z. Bey, Griot Galaxy was one of Detroit's leading avant garde jazz acts, and Kins is their debut, equal parts spacey and tight. If any record on this list deserves a proper and prompt reissue, it's this one.
I'm really curious to know more about these music awards show the Metro Times used to have. This footage is awesome!
From wiki: "The band was founded in 1972 with drummer Tariq Samad, bassist Jaribu Shahid, and saxophonists Bey, Anthony Holland and David McMurray. Their first recorded appearance is often cited as coming from a 1976 album by Phil Ranelin entitled Vibes from the Tribe. Bey is featured with Ranelin on a track called He the One We All Know with drummer Tariq Samad and David Abdul Kahafiz on zeetar. Bey is credited as Faruk Hanif Bey."
"Throughout 1984, Griot Galaxy toured extensively in Europe. A live recording from Austria was released as Opus Krampus by the German label Sound Aspects. This was the last recording of the group, which officially disbanded in 1989 after Bey was involved in a serious motorcycle accident five years prior."
Metro Times music editor Mike McGonigal has written about music since 1984, when he started the fanzine Chemical Imbalance at age sixteen with money saved from mowing lawns in Florida. He's since written for Spin, Pitchfork, the Village VOICE and Artforum. He's been a museum guard, a financial reporter, a bicycle...