With so many different records and styles that Italian DJ Beppe Loda played at Typhoon—during the period he crafted his unique, percussive-heavy style Afro sound—it’s not an easy task to approach a Record Rundown. “It is really impossible to summarize seven years of pure innovation and musical experimentation in my time at Typhoon into ten records,” says Loda. “So I will therefore limit myself to listing the ten songs that have helped to upset the classic way to present a DJ set.”
“Auf Dem Schwarzen Kanal” (RCA) 1980
One night at this club, I met the guest DJ Renato Curatola who went on to become the biggest organizer of Afro events around Italy. He invited me to his record store in the province of Modena. When I entered the store, this was the first record I saw. I listened to it and was electrified so I took it and put it on the counter asking for the price. Renato acted surprised and said to me, “But how do you like this record? It’s so bad,” and he gave it to me for free.
Chris & Cosey
Heartbeat (Rough Trade) 1981
I really don’t remember where I found this, but I immediately fell in love with this amazing U.K. duo. It’s from their 1981 LP Heartbeat.
Pierre Moerlen’s Gong
“Time Is the Key”
Time Is the Key (Arista) 1979
This is one of the many records I played at Typhoon from my big collection of rock records. It’s from the group’s 1979 LP of the same name. The man behind this great piece of funky rock is Pierre Moerlen, a French drummer and percussionist who was in the group Gong in the mid-’70s.
“So Weit, So Gut”
Synthesist (Sky) 1980
About every six to seven weeks, I used to go to Munich in search of German electronic music records. I think I found this one at the WOM (World of Music) record store in Marienplatz [square in downtown Munich]. I later became very close friends with Harald Grosskopf.
Drums of Passion (Columbia) 1960
This percussion master I knew had a brother who ran a record store in Brescia. One day, he told me to go to the shop, as his brother had found a small collection of African records. I initially wanted them so I could practice playing over the record, in the same way as the English guitarists did to learn to play the blues. In the collection, I found this mythical Olatunji record that became a big record for me at Typhoon.
“Toda Menina Baiana”
Realce (WEA) 1979
One evening, we were in Paris with some members of Typhoon and went to the famous Le Palace disco. The theme was Brazilian music, and when I heard this song, I went straight to the booth and asked the person in there, who I think was the owner, for the name of the track. I already knew Gilberto Gil because of “Maracatu Atómico” that I used to play at Typhoon. The next morning I left the hotel in search, but I was very disconsolate and thought, “Where will I find this record in such a big city?” And there decorating the windows of all the record stores was the cover for that record. So it was one record that was not difficult to find!
“Sorrow, Tears, and Blood”
Sorrow, Tears, and Blood (Kalakuta Records) 1977
On a trip to Amsterdam one evening, I went to the legendary Melke (Melkweg) and when I go there, I found out there was a concert by Fela Kuti. That was like being struck by lightning. The next day, I went out looking for his records and found some, including the [1981 comp] Black President that this brilliant track is on.
Guem et Zaka Percussion
Guem et Zaka Percussion (Le Chant Du Monde) 1978
When I was in Paris, I would always go to the Lido Musique reference record store in the Lido passage on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. It was the best place to search for records and was where I found this brilliant percussion record. Guem (Abdelmadjid Guemguem) was an Algerian from a Nigerian family and was a master of trance music. Zaka Percussion was a group of French drummers who also released their own LPs on the label Le Chant Du Monde. The Typhoon crowd loved percussion.
Badder Than Evil
“Hot Wheels (the Chase)”
Gordon’s War Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Buddah) 1973
Carl Sherlock Holmes Investigation
“Investigation” from Investigation No. 1 (C.R.S.) 1974
I had a friend in Milan by the name of Roberto Fraschini who owned a large record import business with his brother. One day, he told me that he had taken an entire warehouse of thousands of records from New York. When they arrived, I was the first to get my hands on it and, amongst many beautiful records, I found these two. When it comes to music from the U.S., it’s always paradise for me.