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African Beat

Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 1 month ago

African Beat/Under Mi Sensi


African Beat has a rather complex and confusing history. The rhythm was first recorded in 1947 by August Musarurwa and his African Dance Band of the Cold Storage Commission of Southern Rhodesia - the rhythm being based on a South African Zulu song. In 1954 it was re-recorded by Msarurgwa and his Bulawayo Sweet Rhythms Band and released in USA and England. The song was in the same year covered by Louis Armstrong becoming a major success.


In 1962 German Bert Kaempfert recorded the song under the title »Afrikaan Beat«. Apparently this versions must have been Lester Sterlings inspiration, judging from the title, for the cut »African Beat« done at Studio One in '68.


The song is often erroneously credited to Don Drummond, this because it was included on the album The Best of Don Drummond. Drummond was however not involved in this recording as he was detained in Bellevue sanatorium when the session took place.


In 1984 Jah Screw produced Barrington Levy with the song »Under Me Sensi« on the African Beat rhythm. The song was an great success for Screw and Levy and as a result the rhythm is frequently known by the name of Barringtons hit.


In -97 the song had a revival with several cuts being released on the rhythm now called Under Me Sensi and Jah Works.



  • Lester Sterling - African Beat
  • Barrington Levy - Under Me Sensi

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