Despite the renewed interest in music from Kenya’s past tracking down copies of songs and their rights holders hasn’t become any easier. Only a handful of music archives around the world have collections of Kenyan music, and just a few private collectors in Kenya and abroad share catalogue information online or privately. Much East African music of this era was originally released only on notoriously fragile 45 rpm seven-inch vinyl singles. The compilers of Kenya Special Volume 2 have gone to great lengths to disclose a small part of what is slowly being accepted as an essential element of East Africa’s cultural heritage: the history of recorded popular music.

Yaseen Mohamed