Listen: Mystery Man William Onyeabor Remains an Enigma, But Man is He Funky

Cover of the new compilation album on Luaka Bop

William Onyeabor is a mystery man, even to the folks at Luaka Bop, who have just released World Psychedelic Classics 5: Who is William Onyeabor?, which collects tracts from the eight albums released by the Nigerian Igbo singer/songwriter between 1977 and 1985.

Onyeabor doesn’t do interviews or tour, and even his record company can’t get any information about him.

Mystery man.

Based on the tracks below, William Onyeabor makes a strange, infectious funk and has a compelling voice that doesn’t really remind me of anyone

THere’s a fascinating story about William Onyeabor in today’s New York Times.

And there’s a review of the album at Pitchfork.

William Onyeabor, “Good Name”

William Onyeabor, “Better Change Your Mind”

Cool promo video from Luaka Bop:

About Michael Goldberg

Michael Goldberg is a distinguished pioneer in the online music space; Newsweek magazine called him an ‘Internet visionary.’ In 1994 he founded Addicted To Noise (ATN), the highly influential music web site. He was a senior vice-president and editor in chief at SonicNet from March 1997 through May 2000. In 1997, Addicted To Noise won Webby awards for best music site in 1998 and 1999, and also won Yahoo Internet Life! awards for three years running as best music site in 1998, 1999 and 2000. Prior to starting Addicted To Noise, Goldberg was an editor and senior writer at Rolling Stone magazine for 10 years. His writing has also appeared in Wired, Esquire, Vibe, Details, Downbeat, NME and numerous other publications. Michael has had three novels published that comprise the "Freak Scene Dream trilogy": "True Love Scars," "The Flowers Lied" and "Untitled" which can be ordered here. His new book, "Wicked Game: The True Story of Guitarist James Calvin Wilsey," can be pre-ordered from HoZac Books. In November Backbeat Books will publish "Addicted To Noise: The Music Writings of Michael Goldberg," which can be be pre-ordered here.

Leave a Reply