October 29, 2011

Revealed who is the conga player playing in TEB TV German appearance! (UPDATED)

Thanks TEB fan Mirco Delfino (follow his interesting TEB Facebook's fans page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Third-Ear-Band/156660855584?sk=wall) at last we have the right identity of the mysterious conga player who played at that TEB TV appearance on German music programme "Beat Club", recently published on an official DVD.
According a redear of that page, his name is Gasper Lawal, and all the clues are absolutely reliable.

From the notes of one of his solo 1980 album "Ajomase" we learn that "Gasper-Lawal, African percussionist extraordinary, is the son of Herbalist Asorono-Akejiwori Lawal. Born in Ijebu-Ode, Nigeria, Gasper came to England in the sixties and gigged with numerous African bands before deciding to involve himself with session work, as a means of expanding his musical horizons. He worked with Ginger Baker’s Airforce, Steve Stills, the Rolling Stones, Funkadelic, Joni Haastrup, Sonny Okosun, Barbra Streisand and many other names before joining Clancy in 1975. In 1977 Gasper returned to Nigeria for a while, returning to England to record ‘AJOMASE’ – which means “we all have to do it together”.

Gasper Lawal from the TEB 1972 "Beat Club" DVD.

Other infos come from another source (http://www.centrohd.com/biogra/l1/gaspar_lawal_b.htm):"Gaspar Lawal b. 23 September 1948, Ijebu-Ode, Nigeria. A percussionist and bandleader, Lawal left Nigeria to settle in the UK in the mid-60s. Basing himself in London, he became rapidly established in the session scene, and over the next ten years recorded with a large number of local and visiting musicians, covering a wide variety of styles, including Ginger Baker's Airforce, Stephen Stills, the The Rolling Stones, George Clinton's Funkadelic and Barbra Streisand. In 1975, he joined London-based rock band Clancy, leaving in 1977 to return to Nigeria. Moving back to London in 1978, Lawal formed his own group, Afriki Sound (later renamed the Drum Oro Band), creating a highly individual style which succeeded in marrying traditional West African roots music and instrumentation with elements of experimental rock and jazz. A fervent believer in the value of traditional African music, Lawal was also convinced that it needed to develop and could benefit from the incorporation of certain western ideas and influences. With Afriki Sound he released two superb albums on his own Cap label, "Ajomase" (which in Yoruba means ‘We all have to do it together’), which spawned two dancefloor hit singles in Kita Kita and Oromoro, and "Abiosunni" (Yoruba for ‘Are you sleeping or what?!’). Both albums featured the cream of expatriate African musicians living in London, notably Olalekan Babolola (percussion), Tunji Omoshebi (trumpet), Abdul Salongo (guitar), Don Amaechi (guitar/percussion/kora/keyboards), Ray Allen (saxophones) and Osibisa's Mac Tontoh (trumpet). In the mid-80s, Lawal was a founder member of Britain's Black Music Association, a pressure group which worked to achieve greater exposure and better working conditions for black musicians".  

From a blog called Permanent Condition (http://permanentcondition.blogspot.com/2007/01/gasper-lawal-ajomas-abiosunni.html) we learn also that Lawal played on important underground albums as Graham Bond's "Magick" and Vivian Stanshall's first solo...
You can find him/his music also on You Tube: 

A Gasper Lawal solo discography:  
Ajomase (LP - Cap Records, UK 1980) 
Abiosunni (LP - UK, 1985) 
Kokoroko (LP - Hot Records, UK 1986)
Kadara (CD - Globe Style, UK 1991)

Main collaborations:
Alexis Korner - "Alexis Korner 1961-1972" 
(Castle Communications, UK 1986)
Funkadelic - "Funkadelic" 
(Westbound Records, USA 1970)
Graham Bond -"We put our magick on you" 
(Vertigo, UK 1971)
Stephen Stills - "Stephen Stills 2" 
(Atlantic, USA 1971)
Vinegar Joe - "Vinerar Joe" 
(Island Records, UK 1972) 
Graham Bell - "Graham Bell" 
(Charisma, UK 1972)
Babe Ruth -"First Base" 
(Gramophone, UK 1973)
Vivian Stanshall - "Men opening umbrellas ahead" (Warner Bros, UK 1974)
Carol Grimes - "Warm Blood" 
(Caroline, UK 1974)
Decameron - "Mammoth Special... plus" 
(Mooncrest, UK 1974)
Babe Ruth - "Amar Caballero" 
(Harvest, UK 1974)
Clancy - "Seriously Speaking" 
(Warner Bros, USA 1975) 
Joan Armatrading - "Back to the Night" 
(A&M, UK 1975)
Clancy - "Everyday"
(Warner Bros, USA 1976)
Eddy Grant - "My turn to love you"
(EPIC, UK 1980)
Wishbone Ash - "Number the Brave" 
(MCA Records, 1981) 
Camel - "Nude" 
(Cherry Red, UK 1981)
Hugh Masekela - "Techno-Bush" 
(Jiva Afrika, UK 1985)
The Associates - "Perhaps"
(WEA, UK 1986) 
3 Mustaphas 3 - "Heart of Uncle" 
(Phonogram, UK 1989)
The Pogues - "Peace and Love"
(Island  Records, UK 1989)


no©2011 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

(file updated on October 30th, 2011)


  1. Hi Luca. Thanks for mentioning me and the facebook page. I read that blog page with more attention...it actually says that Lawal played with the Stones, but it's not sure that he was one of the drummers who performed with them at Hyde Park...
    I downloaded the two solo albums and they are not bad at all. These clips are very good too; great to see he also played with John Martyn!

  2. Thank you for this sort of scoop... At last we know who is that mysterious man! I had some e-mail contacts with such Zenlo, a really strange (old) guy, I've to admit... I don't know, frankly, how much he's reliable about things he tells, but I know he knew Glen, so... We sent us many e-mails but he didn't tell me anything of interest about the TEB... Anyway if he'll tell you something it would be interesting to share it also on this archive...
    Thanks again for all you're doing for 'our cause'!