Not much can be found behind the mystique of Arawak, an Italian music project from the late Benito Simoncini (1939 -2011). He used the alias Arawak for the music he perceived as library music. In 1970, on a little known label called Squirrel Records, Benito released the album Accadde A ……., a beautifully diverse record which takes inspiration from music all around the world. The tracks on this album feature different cities from around the world, all which seem to influence the sound of that particular song. For example, ‘Accadde A Belfast’ samples Northern Irish bagpipes in the background to a heavy beat and a powerful bassline. ‘Accadde A Bahia’ feature Brazilian grooves through an acoustic guitar rhythm which transports you to that part of the world.
It was the song ‘Accadde A Bali’ that Madlib sampled for his classic Quasimoto album The Unseen. On ‘Real Eyes,’ he uses the groove and gorgeous flute sample effortlessly to create a soulful cut, with Lord Quas exercising lyrical gymnastics, as he usually does. Calling out fake gangster rappers over such a soothing beat is just peak Quasimoto, and it just pains me that there isn’t more information to study and unpack about this obscure Italian record. It proves yet again why Madlib is such a genius. ‘Accadde A Bali’ was previously released on a few mixes and compilation albums such as Dusty Fingers Volume Four, released on Strictly Breaks Records in 1998, but the way that Madlib is able to take that sample and loop it the way that he did is just mesmerising.
Listen to Quasimito’s ‘Real Eyes’ below off his 2000 album The Unseen.
Listen to ‘Accadde A Bali’ below off Arawak’s obscure 1970 classic Accadde A…….