21:36 14 October
Mythical African Psycho-Rock Band Makes San Francisco Debut
Mythical African Psycho-Rock Band Makes San Francisco
San Francisco, United States Of America
SAN FRANCISCO —The psychedelic rock stars of their native Zambia, the African band W.I.T.C.H. (an acronym for "We Intend To Cause Havoc") is coming to San Francisco to perform the Chapel on their first-ever tour of the U.S.
Though largely unknown in Africa, W.I.T.C.H. would become one of the biggest rock bands to emerge from the continent in the 1970s. Led by the charismatic singer Emanyeo "Jagari" Chanda and lead guitarist Chris "Kims" Mbewe, the band admired Jimi Hendrix's pyrotechnic guitar and James Brown's irresistible groove and crafted a style of fuzzy-out garage rock that was taken fairly from psychedelia and funk.
The band's first three albums — the 1972 debut In the Past, the 1974 Introduction, and the 1975 landmark Lazy Bones — established the band as one of the leading lights of the national music movement that would eventually be called "Zamrock." But by the end of the decade, with the nation facing economic collapse and increasingly authoritarian rule, bands like W.I.T.C.H. They were forced to play daytime shows to avoid strict curfews.
It was around the time that Chanda left the band, wanting to support himself and his family by working as a teacher or a gemstone miner, according to conflicting accounts. The group would move in a more dance direction, finally splitting up in the mid-1980s. But in the decades that followed, the original W.I.T.C.H. recordings became a scarce and prized resource by collectors and hip-hop artists hunting for untapped sample outlets.
The use of W.I.T.C.H. samples by popular beatsmith Madlib for his Beat Conducta in Africa mixtape and the reissue of the band's first three records by Now-Again Records in 2012 ignited a huge resurgence of interest in the group. At this time, the only living member of the W.I.T.C.H. Chanda was moving to the West Coast the next year, playing at events hosted by Madlib in Los Angeles and at 1015 Folsom in San Francisco.