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Morabeza Records

The Morabeza Records collection contains digitized LPs with Cape Verde music from Rotterdam-based label Morabeza Records from the period 1965-1976.

Morabeza Records was founded in Rotterdam in 1965 by João Silva (also known as Djunga de Biluca). It was the first Cape Verde record label in the world. Several later Cape Verdean artists released their first music on Morabeza Records. This makes Morabeza Records an important place in Cape Verde music.

Morabeza Records also has a clear place in Cape Verde history for another reason. The establishment of the label was part of the struggle for independence against Portugal, led by Amílcar Cabral. The Portuguese colonial government forbade the making of Cape Verden music in Cape Verde. From Rotterdam, which has a large Cape Verdean community, Silva (by order of Cabral) with Morabeza Records could secure the Cape Verdean culture and keep it alive. Cape Verde became independent in 1975.

Due to the great cultural-historical value of Morabeza Records, the master tapes were transferred to the Rotterdam City Archives in 2016, as important Rotterdam and Cape Verdean heritage. The City Archives conserves the tapes and has digitized them along with their record covers.

In collaboration with the Rotterdam City Archives and João Silva, the digitized collection of Morabeza Records is also accessible via the Muziekweb and can be listened to in all Dutch public libraries.

Click for all music from the collection Morabeza Records.