On our musical radar this week (and probably in the many weeks to follow) is the Tel Avivian record company “Fortuna Records”, a reissue label whose eclectic backgrounds and colorful influences are detectable in the vintage Israeli and Middle Eastern sounds they specialize in.
The fun-loving label’s main target is DJs and their audiences. The process of issuing an album at the label always begins with the question: Will this work on a club’s dance floor?
Founded four years ago by Zach Bar, Ariel Tagar, Yoav Magriso and Maor Anava, Fortuna Records already boasts of fans such as British DJ Gilles Peterson, Gaslamp Killer and John Talabot (to name a few).
The label’s founders also function as masterful DJs themselves, appearing at leading European clubs as part of their enormously popular “Boiler Room” parties, with the label holding a monthly residency at Berlin’s hot Panke Club.
“Boiler Room” party mix in Tel Aviv
Fortuna Records exude a strong love of Greek tunes. Some of the records and songs they produce were originally recorded in Israel as early as the 1970s, when Greek music was dominant in the Israeli nightlife scene. Perhaps not so surprisingly, the label and its DJs are very popular in Greece. “At first it seemed strange– why would they want to hear Greek music produced in Israel?”, elaborates Tagar. “But the younger generation in Greece is rediscovering their older music… it’s a bit similar to what’s happening here with Mizrahi [Eastern] music.”
This weekend, Fortuna Records are bringing their soulful, frenetic and psychedelic beats to Tel Aviv’s Beit Romano, with an emphasis on tunes originating all the way back in Mama Africa.