We started life in 1989 as a small record shop underneath Daddy Kool’s Reggae Store on Berwick Street in London. We were the first shop to sell vinyl releases from independent hip hop labels such as Def Jam, Rawkus, Nervous and Big Beat outside of the USA. We also became an established bearer for hard-to-find, classic Latin music, particularly Brazilian, outside of the Americas.
Over the following years Bongo moved three times within Soho and opened in Shibuya, Japan. We moved our offices to Brighton in 1999 and closed all shops in 2003.
22 years on we now have a recording roster featuring some of the best Brazilian, Latin, reggae, African and Jazz music by artists including Terry Callier, Jorge Ben, Joyce, Seu Jorge, Prince Fatty, Incredible Bongo Band and Marcos Valle.
In 2004 we moved into world cinema, a venture that has grown to compliment the music. In keeping with the record label philosophy, we carefully select and source films from around the world and our catalogue now includes works by esteemed directors including Scorsese, Coppola, Has, Bertolucci, Rocha and Dovzhenko amongst others. We aim to unearth iconic, stylish, hard-to-find gems and cult classics and make them readily available to cinema lovers.
We are modest compared to our competitors in the film world but hope that our rich history and knowledge has established us as an aficionado that punches above its weight (and is yet to reach its full potential).
We also have a publishing arm with an in-house team that produces and licenses music for use by third parties. Our clients include advertising, film and TV companies around the world; brands such as Bacardi, Nike, Adidas, Fosters, Nissan and Guinness have used our music. We also deal with worldwide royalty collection for artists and organisations.
For all music licensing enquiries please contact us.
Theatrical and TV Film Usage
We have theatrical and TV rights for many of our films - please contact us via email or call +44 (0) 1273 600546 for more information.
We are currently working very closely with The Favela Surf Clube in Rio de Janeiro, BR - read about the project more here.