MIDI, MAXI & EFTI – s/t (1992)
These girls sound like a cross between M.C. Hammer and the Shaggs, filtered through “Sarafina!”. Or like an African version of The Donnas — except with less charisma.
The only reason I picked this one up in the first place was because my good friend Rev. Magog (of the Beer and Jesus Archives), the same friend that put the heavy-hitting N.W.O.B.H.M. compilations, Von LMO and Mistreater into my hands, told me that I should give it a cursory listen — and to him I guess I can say — thanks — ? When looking through his deep record collection, I happened upon this CD, and when he saw it in my hands, he said “Aww, take a listen to that sometime. A group of Swedish girls doing crappy reggae pop.” My eyebrows immediately went up. Wikipedia sez:
“Midi, Maxi & Efti was a Swedish musical group with African influences from the early 1990′s. Their two biggest hits were ‘Bad Bad Boys’ and ‘Ragga Steady’. The band consisted of the two twin sisters Midi and Maxi Berhanu and their friend Freweyni ‘Efti’ Teclehaimanot, all of them born in 1976. Midi and Maxi were refugees from Ethiopia and came to Sweden with their parents in 1985. Efti was born in a refugee camp in Eritrea and also arrived in Sweden in 1985. The three girls finally met in the Stockholm suburb of Akalla.
Their self-titled album was released in 1991 and spawned three singles, ‘Bad Bad Boys’, ‘Ragga Steady’ and ‘Masenko’. Although the girls contributed lyrics, most of the Africa-inspired songs were in fact composed and produced by the men behind Army of Lovers â€“ Alexander Bard, Anders Wollbeck and Per Adebratt, assisted by E-type and Stakka Bo. Styling was done by Jean-Pierre Barda and Camilla Thulin. In 1992, the album was released in the U.S. by Columbia Records, and a video was made for ‘Ragga Steady’, directed by Frank Sacramento. The band split up after a few short tours of the U.S., South Africa and France.
Their songs have been featured in the TV series ‘Beavis and Butthead’ and the movie ‘For Love or Money’ (starring Michael J. Fox). The members have since recorded songs separately, but nothing has been released.”