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Celebrating 25 years of Mr Bongo: Incredible Bongo Band

In late October 1989, David 'Mr Bongo' Buttle opened his first record shop, 
underneath Daddy Kool’s Reggae Store on Berwick Street in London. 25 years later and we are still flying the flag for quality music, and are now celebrating a quarter of a century of Mr Bongo. 

As part of our 25 years retrospective we will be looking back at some of our favourite releases. Today it's the turn of...

Incredible Bongo Band

We think its fair to say that the Incredible Bongo Band have it all. The stories, the heritage and the recordings.

Formed by MGM A&R Michael Viner in 1972 to supplement the soundtrack to the virtually anonymous B-Movie film The Thing With Two Heads, the Incredible Bongo Band went from a loose studio collective to an instrumental pop covers consortium, interpreting classics of the day in their own inimitable percussion-heavy fashion.

The life and times of the IBB are too extensive to cover in a blog post, so luckily then, in 2012 Canadian director, Dan Forer, released a documentary film about them entitled 'Sample This'. We highly recommend that you watch it. 

IBB are most famous for their cover of Apache, originally made famous by The Shadows. Stone cold, 100% legendary in its own right and responsible for hundreds of dance and hip hop records as one of the most sampled tracks of all time. It was a staple for the likes of Kool Herc and Grandmaster Flash as they invented the art of DJing at the Bronx block parties of the ‘70s. 


Incredible Bongo Band records have been sampled by legends including Nas, Beastie Boys, Moby, Mick Jagger, Kanye West, Sugarhill Gang, Jay-Z, Aphex Twin, DJ Shadow, Goldie, Double Dee & Steinski, Faith Evans, Hijack, Ultramagnetic MC’s, Leaders of the New School, UNKLE, Spinna, The Bizzie Boyz, Schoolly D, LL Cool J, 2 Live Crew, 4 Hero, Godfather Don, Diamond D, Luke Vibert, Sway & King Tech, Rebel MC to name a few...

We proudly released 'Bongo Rock' as a compilation in 2006, followed by several 7"'s and 12"'s. Most recently, in 2014, we re-issued the original LP's printed as they were originally to celebrate 40 years of the band: 'Bongo Rock' and 'The Return'.

'Apache' is of course featured on our 25 Years Of Mr Bongo compilation, available on 2-CD and download.