A discography of the George Goch Mines Natives in chronological order based on matrix numbers sourced from Alan Kelly's research on the history of the Gramophone Company. Click on the links to listen to the tracks in the SAMAP archive:
George Goch Mines Natives, Johannesburg, April 27, 1912
1108ak Isibalo (4055, X-44516)
1109ak Izimbala (4055, X-44517)
1110ak Nkoma (4054, X-44514)
1112ak Matendere (4054, X-44515)
1114ak Kwa Gaza iz Mgambi (4053, X-44513)
1115ak Skenekiso (4053, X-44512)
1116ak Isiggoko (4052, X-44510)
1117ak Famba Kata (4052, X-44511)
GEORGE GOCH MINES NATIVES
The UK based Gramophone Company Limited (home to labels like His Master's Voice and Zonophone) was one of the first companies to issue South African music and had sent a recording engineer George Walter Dillnutt there with a mobile unit in March and April of 1912. The unit recorded material in Johannesburg and Cape Town that was subsequently issued on 78 rpm shellac discs and marketed in South Africa as the 4000 series on the company's Zonophone Twin label. The company would continue making recordings in the 1920s and 30s at its head office in London. The label pictured above shows the 1st design used in the 4000 series.
The George Goch Mine, owned by mining magnate George Goch operated in Johannesburg from at least before the Boer War. Goch became the Mayor of Johannesburg from 1904-1905 and a township on the eastern side of the city was also named for him. Many mines had performance groups that often competed in formal competitions organised by the mine (See Hugh Tracey's book African Dances of the Witwatersrand Gold Mines) Dillnutt recorded at least eight tracks with the group from George Goch Mine on April 27, 1912. The label states that the performers were using a "Native Piano" (sometimes referred to as a thumb piano or mbira) but in this case it appears to be a xylophone-like instrument known as a timbila.
This particular record was part of a personal collection of 78 rpms that were owned by ethnomusicologist Percival Kirby. To be sure, Kirby made hand-written notes on many of the labels. Kirby also numbered the discs with a large circular sticker, as can be seen above. At some point the discs were acquired by, Johannesburg collector, Warren Siebrits who subsequently passed them onto the Flat International archive.
Many thanks to Warren Siebrits for leading me to this record! Also I am indebted to Alan Kelly for his tireless research on the discography of the Gramophone Company.