Born in 1936, guitarist, composer, arranger, bandleader, and producer has been a vital figure on the Ghanaian music scene for over six decades.
In the late '50s he was active in the influential highlife bands the Stargazers and the Broadway Dance Band, and in 1962 he took his own group, the Black Star Highlife Band, to London, which led to collaborations with Fela Kuti and other African musicians in Britain at the time.
Returning to Ghana, he worked as a producer, crafting recordings for Pat Thomas, C.K. Mann, and others, as well as exploring his own projects, combining traditional Ghanaian material with Afro-beat, jazz, and funk rhythms to create his own recognizable sound in the '70s.
Taylor's work became popular internationally with hip-hop producers in the 21st century, which led to the release of Love & Death on Strut Records in 2010, his first internationally distributed album. Its success prompted Strut to issue the stellar retrospective Life Stories: Highlife & Afrobeat Classics 1973-1980, in the spring of 2011. A year later, in 2012, a third Strut album, the deeply personal Appia Kwa Bridge, appeared, and showed that at 76, Taylor was still intensely creative and focused, mixing traditional Fante songs and chants with children's rhymes and personal matters into his own sharp vision of highlife.
Mr Bongo are delighted to release two of his most sought after albums, the self-titled Ebo Taylor and Conflict written with with Uhuru Yenzu. Originally released in 1977, his self-titled album is a rarity that truly exposes the genius of the Ghanaian producer and arranger. Conflict is a perfect example of Taylorʼs trademark approach that saw him inject a heavy dose of funk into Ghanaʼs traditional highlife grooves in an attempt to move away from what he saw as the musicʼs more traditional qualities.