Complaints? Praise? Advice? Let me know about your experiences with e-tailers…
Africassette, run out of Detroit, Michigan, is a worldwide retailer of African music as well as a record label with 5 releases. Zimbabwean selection is limited. I have ordered from them once and all went well. Mail-order only.
Lets give three cheers for corporate consolidation. Amazon is now partnered with CD Now and HMV Online, givng us an even smaller selection and less competition. Amazon does, however, have decent selection of Zimbabwean music. Offers mail and online ordering. In my experience, they have been reliable, although their more obscure CDs are prone to ordering delays. Lots of music samples for their CDs.
Has a good selection of Zimbabwean music, generally at lower prices than Amazon or CD Now. Prone to shipping specials, making this possibly the best source for the more popular titles such as Mapfumo, The Four Brothers, Real Sounds, and the Frontline compilations. Online ordering only.
Brown Sugar Web
Offers a large selection of African records. Lots of Zimbabwean LPs. Website hasn’t worked since Aug 2003, but the operator periodically sells ultra-rare LPs and singles – check out his listings on eBay.
Zimbabwean-music magazine with a catalog of music titles. Good selection of both traditional and electric titles, especially for artists unavailable elsewhere. Catalog includes cassettes and CDs. Helpful, friendly, prompt and reliable – I’ve ordered two cassettes and have been pleased with the results. Mail-order only but highly recommended.
GEMM is a msuci search engine with queries thousands of vendors and shops for all types, styles, formats and genres of music – from new toused, popular to rare. I purchased from an Australian supplier via their system and had no difficulties. A search through here for your favourite rare something may turn up a result.
Nick’s African Tape and Record Import (NATARI) has a great selection of CD’s, Cassette, and LPs from all over Africa. Zimbabwean selection is excellent. High prices (UK-based) but it is most likely to have what you’re looking for, especially if you’re into older releases. Now if only I could finnagle Nick into selling me some Chibadura and Devera Ngwena LPs from his personal collection…
The online presence of Zimbabwe’s largest record chain. Lists only charts – no catalogue available. The last quote I received had Zim CDs at $2700 ZWD, but who knows how inflation has changed that since.
Another distributor/record company all in one. By far the best selection of African music on the net. Offers CDs, Cassettes, and even LPs. High prices, but the selection is definitely there. Unfortunately their older releases tend to be listed as “usually available” or “out of stock”. Offers almost all of the Earthworks releases. Online ordering.
Prices comparable to most retail outlets, but with a better general selection of African music. Zimbabwean selection is ok. Online ordering.
From the producers of Zimsite comes a whole new Zimbabwean music portal. Zimsounds has a fantastic selection of Zimbabwean and African titles. Cheap, relaiable, trustworthy, and fast. Looking forward to having some more money to blow, eventually…