Until recently, it was thought that we had heard all there was to hear from Saâda Bonaire. Though the group had continued working until 1994, founder Ralph “von” Richthoven had firmly stated that all of their post-1986 work was lost: “I threw away most of my work; I didn’t see any reason to hold onto it anymore.” A visit to a relative’s house, however, turned up a pleasant surprise: Richthoven stumbled across a battered cassette tape labeled Saâda Bonaire ‘91.
Released now for the first time ever, 1992 compiles the band’s long-lost early nineties material. Produced between Bremen and New York City, the 12 songs presented here capture the group’s attempts at steering their trademark fusion sound (reggae, afro-funk, Eastern music, and sultry German female vocals) into uncharted nu jazz, trip-hop, and house territories.
Listen to the first single, ‘Woman,’ below. Of the track / material Richthoven notes: “I always knew our tastes were a bit ahead of the times. Maybe we should have stopped staring out into the great beyond for inspiration and just stuck with the local marketing program. But what for? Short term status and fast money? If the market doesn’t agree with what we’re doing, it’s not my problem. If that’s arrogant thinking, then call me arrogant! I still get chills running down my spine when I listen to “Woman” and “To Know You Is To Love You”. Deep inside, I know we achieved our musical potential.”