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The Daktaris

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Retro afro-funksters from NYC. Part of the Desco Records crew. Originally a hoax claiming to be a genuine undiscovered afro-beat album, they later morphed into Antibalas and various Daptone Records projects.

Jo Jo Quo (Congas and Voice), Alaji Boniface Luremi (Lead Guitar), G.G. Vikey (Tenor Guitar), Olu “Rocksteady” Owudemi (Drums), Clement Apaokagi (Bass), Joe Hrbeck (Alto Sax), Femi “Dokita” Doolittle (Baritone Sax), Neal Pawley (Trombone), Alaji Milificient Agbebe (Trompette), Abou Sylla (Sticks), Azouhouni Adou (Keyboards), Idowu Perkins (Shaker), Adrian Bako (Tenor Sax), Martin Ogbene (Flute), Gbenro “Mr. Icee” Fakeye (Clarinet, Melodica and Bell).

(2) The Daktaris were an Afro-beat group on the New York-based funk revival label Desco, recording compact, Fela Kuti-style grooves that sounded as though they’d come straight out of 1970s Nigeria. At first, Desco did nothing to discourage that perception, packaging their 1998 album Soul Explosion to look like an authentically African collector’s dream, and even giving some of the band members Nigerian aliases. But in reality, the Daktaris were Brooklyn-based studio musicians, many of them white, many of whom had already been assembled by Desco heads Gabriel Roth and Phillipe Lehman as the label’s house band, the Soul Providers. Besieged by inquiries about the music’s origins and demand for a Daktaris tour, Roth and Lehman soon acknowledged the hoax, but given the quality of the album, the backlash wasn’t enormously great.

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