"Fantôme Phonographique present a reissue of Om Kalsoum's La Ya Habiby, originally released in 1963. A titan of middle eastern music, the contralto singer Om Kalsoum (or, Umm Kulthum) was hailed as "The Voice of Egypt" or "Egypt's Fourth Pyramid," and as she reportedly sold over 80 million records worldwide during her lifetime, she is one of the most popular singers of all time. Born in a small village in the Nile Delta, either in the late 1890s or the early 1900s, she joined her father's family group at an early age and as a teenager, was taught classical Arab music by singer Mohamed Abo Al-Ela. The composer Zakariyya Ahmad convinced her to move to Cairo in the early 1920s, where the composer and oud player Mohamed El Qasabgi introduced her to the Arabic Theatre Palace, where she enjoyed her first taste of success, leading to her breakthrough in the early 1930s and subsequent tours of the middle east; appearances in local films and the regular broadcasts of her live concerts allowed her to surpass her rivals. At home, her peak period is seen as the 1940s and '50s, yet she continued to record enthralling work in the '60s and '70s, including "La Ya Habiby," an epic song of heartache, composed by Riad El Sombati, with lyrics by Abdelfatah Moustapha, first recorded in 1963. Kalsoum has since been cited as an influence by Bob Dylan, Robert Plant, Bono, and Jah Wobble, among many others." - Fantome Phonographique .
After nearly a decade of false starts, multiple game plans veering off the rails, and a handful of shattered hopes and/or dreams, the odyssey is finally complete—the new Fusetron site is here.
This is the first phase of a multipart rollout that will span the next few months: the currently browsable stock includes miscellaneous new releases from the past 8+ months (we have a lot of catching up to do), plus approximately a third of our backstock. Note that we’ve reduced/slashed prices on many titles and will continue to do so in order to make room for new stock. We’ll also be expanding / tweaking / improving / debugging the site itself (for example, we still have work to do on the automated international postage system, not to mention the inevitable inventory discrepancies that come with transferring an ancient and massive database to a new system).
Over the next few months, as we take inventory, clean house, and delve into our storage, we will be uploading thousands of additional items, gradually, on a near-daily basis. This will include the majority of the LPs, as well as many titles, in all formats, once thought long-gone. Many currently “sold out” items are likely to resurface.
Finally, once our general backstock is up (probably in the next two or three months) we’ll begin making our extensive stockpile of rarities available online for the first time: tons of random out-of-print titles, "deadstock," warehouse finds, secondhand collectibles, etc., accumulated over the past few decades.
Frequent/returning customers will be getting early access to these items. Details to follow on how this will work (a priority mailing list? a 'frequent flyer'-like program?), but it will not be based on dollars spent. We want to reward those who consistently support us, especially in the discogs marketplace era (to those who show up trying to poach five copies of a one-off rarity, and nothing else, ever… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ).
So—we suggest you take some time to dig through the site—even we’ve been surprised by what’s been turning up, and there’s much more to come.