Our Editor


Matthew Ruddick

Author of Funny Valentine, an acclaimed new biography of the jazz trumpet player and singer, Chet Baker.
  • 1
Saturday, 27 October 2018 04:19

Super Elcados ‎– Togetherness Is Always A Good Venture, Tambourine Party Vol. 2

Written by 
    Authors Ranking: Authors Ranking
Rate this item
(7 votes)
Deep Afrobeat still sounding fresh 42 years later.

The Super Elcados only ever released three albums in relatively quick session, with Frank Martins as the frontman on the Fender lead guitar and vocals. Togetherness Is Always A Good Venture - Tambourine Party Vol 2 was the first in 1976, originally released on EMI Nigeria, followed by The World Is Full of Injustice and Whatever You Need. This funky album features eight songs in a startling short 35 minutes. Way too quick for me, as the funk is heavy from the get-go and it just leaves me wanting more. 

Although the UK’s equivalent, the Average White Band, had greater success,  I suspect there was some unintentional or coincidental inspiration from Elcados.

Tambourine Party is a nice funky drum riff. A fluid disco evolution of the Amen break. This is a great party track, while Afro Funk starts with the afro beats, full of funky horns reminiscent of Fela Kuti. Xray Gun is probably as deep as it goes when it comes to funk. This indeed is a floor filler for the retro crew. As the pace drops to a melodic serenade How Much I Love You is probably not in my favourite on the album. However, it does add a nice contrast giving you time to chill and get it together.

Ejole measures 10 out of 10 of the Afro-funk Richter scale, causing many unexplained natural disasters. It is heavy. There are no words to explain this. It’s just the funk. Staying on the heavy vibe, Joe Edem Bassey Edet drops the mandatory conga funk accent to Tribute to Murtala Mohammed, Frank Martins’ monologue - an ode to the former military leader of Nigeria. Despite this the track’s sentiment, it’s still funky.

Reminiscent of James Brown, but without the flair - yet plenty of tuneage - Get Up and Do It Good has stood the test of time. This feel-good, motivational tune has a positive and admirable musical structure. If it is the first time you have heard this, you may recognise the style and possibly confuse it with other great tunes of that style. 

In summary, this is a great album, and the adage still stands “released ahead of its time”. The song structures aren't too dissimilar which maintains that funky beat through the album with exception to a few. I am not sure of its past commercial success, but vinyl has been revived and this gratifying new member to the family. There can be no argument about what is classified as good taste in music. Music is written into our DNA and expressed creatively by the Super Elca Elcados as one of the forerunners of funk. The performance quality is what you would expect of this particular era and vibrant. Music was and is still used in political statements to create a memory as per track 6 - Tribute to Murtala Mohammed. The Production quality is a little rough around the edges, however, that comes with the territory and its commercial success may demand a remaster.  



Lead Guitar, Vocals – Frank Martins

Trumpet – Bola Adex

Electric Piano, Synthesizer, Tenor Saxophone, Vocals – Dave Crown Olugbade

Bass Guitar, Vocals – Tony Steven Nosika

Congas, Percussion – Joe Edem Bassey Edet

Drums, Percussion, Vocals – Rocky Mustapha Philips

Organ, Guitar, Vocals – Geoffrey Johnson

Valve Trombone – Jarret Effiong

Vocals – Christe Black


Label: EMI


Read 2279 times Last modified on Sunday, 28 October 2018 09:43

Our Contributors


Rob Mallows

London Jazz Meetup owner and fan of ‘plugged in’ jazz.

Simon Cooney

By day a full time Londoner in tv news. By night jazzaholic

Fernando Rose

I love my jazz and I bless the funk. I play percussion for all and sundry and go by @Mr Cool.

Grae Shennan

Laboratory scientist with a love of evolving music that defies boundaries. 

Hilary Robertson

Jazz-obsessed freelance writer and saxist.

Kim Cypher

Saxophonist, vocalist, composer, band leader and radio show presenter. Follows dreams and loves to celebrate great music and musicians.

Fiona Ross

Fiona is the founder of the award winning organisation Women in Jazz Media. She was the guest editor in chief for the 2020 edition of Jazz Quarterly and writes for many publications across the globe.

Wendy Kirkland

Jazz pianist and singer with wide musical tastes spanning latin through fusion to bebop and swing. Cat fanatic.

Elana Shapiro

From Manchester, currently living in Berlin. Lover of jazz, RnB, and soul inspired music.