Ghanaian highlife artist Pat Thomas is set to release his 16th album. It is his first international studio album release. The album, simply titled Pat Thomas and Kwashibu Area Band, features his Kwashibu Area Band and has directors Kwame Yeboah and Ben Abarbanel-Wolff on board. Together the directors and artist have created new songs as well as updated Thomas’s songs from the 1980s for a live band.
Although recorded in Ghana’s capital Accra, the album will not be released in his home country Ghana. Thomas recently explained to Kojo Akoto Boateng, host of Ghana’s Saturday Live show, before its release: “The album will be ready at the end of June 2015. It will be released in Europe. The recording company is in France and they want to begin with a European release.”
Born Nana Kwabena Amo Mensah, Pat Thomas is popularly called “the Golden Voice of Africa” (as is Malian legend Salif Keita). Thomas has worked in Europe and in a couple of countries in Africa. He has lived in Africa, Europe and North America. His new album features Tony Allen, former drummer for afrobeat maestro Fela. It also has Ebo Taylor, a long-time collaborator of Thomas.
His record label, the UK-based Strut Records, clearly has high hopes for the release. They recently proclaimed: “The new studio album from West African music legend Pat Thomas is shaping up to be one of the most exciting releases of the year!”