Original Release Date: 1979
Current Artist Web Site: http://www.myspace.com/kiddafrika
Kidd Afrika is the seventh Windham Hill Album and the first Kidd Afrika album. For the first 10 Windham Hill albums, I suspect William Ackerman subscribed to the “I only publish one kind of music. The good kind.” theory. In the first three years of giving Windham Hill a go as a business, he released three of his own solo guitar albums, a lovely folk/pop album by Seattle musician Linda Waterfall, another solo guitar album by his cousin Alex De Grassi, and this immensely fun R&B/Blues party album by Kidd Afrika. This music is great fun. Really. Buy it now and put it on repeat at your next party. Don’t have a party planned? Schedule one just so you can play it and have a great time.
EDIT: September, 2019
In the Windham Hill Lovers Facebook group, we discussed the correct catalog number for this title – I had mistakenly marked it as C-1007, and yet a look at the vinyl tells me that is should be WHSR-1007. The number is right but the R is wrong. We asked label-founder Will Ackerman about the difference and he commented:
“You guys know more about this than I do ! I wasn’t sure exactly what WH should be… up to a certain point it was just anything I liked… though I had an affinity for guitar obviously. Having your cousin be Alex de Grassi certainly seemed to point us in the guitar direction, but I knew the players in Kidd Afrika ) and thought we’d give it a try. Utter failure. We’d had a bit of a buzz with Linda Waterfall’s Mary’s Garden (C 1002) which probably encouraged me to branch out further. I was pretty much dope slapped back into the world that I knew best… guitar. My cousin Alex de Grassi added further legitimacy to the label and I had hopes for the Erik Satie record (had we done this later I think we could have been very successful with it). W”
- I Believe in You Don Davis (Groovesville Music, MI) (3:25)
- Handouts T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI) (3:50)
- She’s My Lady T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI) (5:25)
- I’m Gonna Be More T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI)(7:42)
- Spread the News Around Sonny Terry (Prestige Music, BMI) (2:13)
- Don’t Mess with Mr. T Marvin Gaye (Jobete Music Co. ASCAP; and 20th Century Music Corporation, ASCAP) (6:20)
- Take the Bait T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI) (5:26)
- Marmalade and Jam T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI)(4:00)
- Apologize T. J. Politzer (KiddTunes, BMI) (3:19)
- Produced by Ned Neltner and Kidd Afrika
- Engineered by Tim Rock at the Music Farm, Seattle, Washington, except for I BELIEVE IN YOU Engineered by Ron Gangnes at Kay Smith Studios, Seattle Washington
- Mastered by Ken Perry at Capitol
- Photos by Fred Milkie Studios in Seattle
- Cover by Jack Nesbitt and David Imanaka
- Insert by Jack Nesbitt
- Released through Windham Hill Records, Box 9388 Stanford, CA 94305
- Management by Don V. Ball 815 N 45th St., Seattle WA 98103 (206) 632-9690 and Ivan Buchbinder, PO Box 601 Bellingham, WA 98225 (206) 734-1435 — PLEASE NOTE THESE NUMBERS WERE PRINTED IN 1977 AND LIKELY NOT CURRENT.
(Includes complete lyrics, and the following additional credits)
Teddy Joe Politzer
Lead Vocal, lead electric and acoustic guitars, vibes on TAKE THE BAIT, mandolin on MARMALADE AND JAM.
Electric and acoustic rhythm guitars, vocals.
Drums, percussion, vocals, Fender Rhodes piano on DON’T MESS WITH MR. T.
Fender Bass, vocals.
Tenor and alto sax and horn arrangements on I BELIEVE IN YOU, I’M GONNA BE MORE, and APOLOGIZE with the West Seattle Horns, Ned Neltner on coronet and Les Clinkingbeard on baritone.
All selections published by KiddTunes ©1978, BMI except for SPREAD THIS NEWS AROUND, (Sonny Terry), Prestige ©1962, BMI; DONT MESS WITH MR. T, (Marvin Gaye), Jobete/20th Century Music Corporation ©1972, ASCAP; I BELIEVE IN YOU, (Don Davis), Groovesville Music, © 1973 BMI.
Used by Permission. All Rights Reserved.
We dedicate this project to our friends and fans in appreciation of all their help, support, and inspiration. Thank You All. Donny, Larry, Teddy Joe, James.
Additional copies and other releases are available through Windham Hill Records.
Update, September, 2019: Note that the catalog number on all vinyl issues found to date is WHSR-1007, NOT WHS-C1007 as indicated in the title of this review.
Kudos to the kids of the band members; they have made the album available digitally and set up a MySpace page. The album is available for listening and downloading from the Kidd Afrika page on Rhapsody. It’s also available at the Amazon MP3 store, and a few other sources, so pick your poison. Sure, the quality of the MP3 stores isn’t quite HDTracks quality, but hey, it will do until the unlikely event the album is re-issued.
In a 2016 Facebook post, Ackerman added some details about this, and the othe early Windham Hill instrumental title, Kidd Afrika: “Linda Waterfall (Mary’s Garden) and Kidd Afrika were personal choices of mine … Linda was at Stanford with me and was close to JB White and Frank Light (the “White Light Band”) who were as good as any duo on the radio at the time…. no, I mean REALLY as good as anything on the radio at that time. Linda was equally brilliant …. Kidd Afrika included Larry Ryan who was a faculty brat like me… his dad was in the English Dept. at Stanford along with my dad and a lot of memories include Larry.”
Recorded at the Kaye-Smith Studios in Seattle – from Wikipedia: Kaye-Smith 1969-1982 – Kaye-Smith was a joint venture between actor/comedian Danny Kaye and businessman Lester Smith. Kaye-Smith owned several radio stations includingKJR, the dominant AM top 40 station in Seattle during the 1960s and 1970s. Together, they also owned Seattle’s Kaye-Smith studios (where records by Heart, Steve Miller andBTO were recorded), Concerts West (with Pat O’Day, a booking and promotion company that handled Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Bad Company, Eagles, Paul McCartney, and others); and were original owners of the Seattle Mariners baseball team.