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The Kusum Beat


Sweet Talks were undoubtedly amongst the top five biggest bands in Ghana in the 1970s, recording a string of hit albums. The Kusum Beat was originally released in 1974 and became somewhat of a household favorite with heavy emphasis on the "Afro" through its traditional rhythms and motifs, blended together into a modern mix that combined highlife, funk and Afrobeat. Like a small handful of seminal Ghanaian albums, The Kusum Beat has stood the test of time and sounds as original and unique today as it did back in 1974, thus original pressings are in high demand and can be found on record exchanges for significant prices. This was the second album from the band who were formerly known as El Dorados, later to change their name to Medican Lantcis before settling on Sweet Talks, having moved to a live residency at the legendary Talk of the Town nightclub in the port town of Tema, just outside the capital of Ghana-Accra. It is here that they established a name for themselves as one of the most exciting young bands in the country. Due to the popularity and commercial success of their first three albums -- Adam & Eve, The Kusum Beat and Spiritual Ghana -- the band began touring on a regular basis and made it as far as Los Angeles and here they went on to record what was to be their biggest-selling record, the Hollywood Highlife Party LP as well as some straight disco recordings aimed squarely at the burgeoning American market. The Kusum Beat is far from typical of their trademark sound but shows just how versatile an outfit they were -- able to turn their hands to any one of a number of styles. It's a great reminder of how open-minded, experimental and curious the music scene in Ghana was back in the first half of the 1970s.