Spare Dog Records

Spare Dog Records

Malawi Music for the World

About Spare Dog Records

Spare Dog Records is a Bristol based record label which releases and promotes music from Malawi, a small country in Central Southern Africa. We work with our sister project out in Malawi, Moto Wambili Studios, to record a range of original contemporary music from talented artists, in a place where professional recording studios are scarce.

Gasper Nali 2022 Tour

Tour Banner 2022

After 2 years of cancelled tours, Gasper Nali will once again grace Benelux and the UK by his presence, his one-of-a-kind Babatoni instrument and undeniably magic afro-beats. Your feet will be possessed. Here are the dates so far:

1 July DTRH, Ewijk, NL
2 July Afrikafestival, Hertme, NL
3 July Afrikafestival, Hertme, NL

8 July Terras of Theatres, Tilburg, NL
9 July Over ‘t IJ, Amsterdam, NL
10 July 4AD, Diksmuide, BE

16 July Busk in London, London, UK
17 July Beat-Hearder, Clithero, UK

20 July Earthship, Brighton, UK
21 July St Georges, Bristol, UK
22 July LeaOrganic, London, UK
23 July EFEx, Manchester, UK
24 July Promised Land, Sheffield, UK

29 July Deer Shed, Yorkshire, UK
30 July Cambridge Folk, Cambridge, UK
31 July Camp Bestival, Dorset, UK

2 Aug Olympic Park, London, UK
5 Aug Green Gathering, Chepstow, UK
6 Aug Wilderness, Oxfordshire, UK

10 Aug Boomtown Fair, Hampshire, UK
12 Aug Square & Compass, Swanage, UK
13 Aug Art in the Park, Leamington Spa, UK
14 Aug Head Out Not Home, Norwich, UK

16 Aug The Canteen, Bristol, UK
19 Aug Weston-Super-Mare, UK
20 Aug Purbeck Folk, Purbeck, UK
21 Aug Camp Bestival, Shropshire, UK

23 Aug All Points East, London, UK
28 Aug Shambala Festival, Northants, UK

Presenting: Probably Stereo Club

Introducing the first proper episode of Probably Stereo Club – a new YouTube series where we get into everything and anything having to do with what Spare Dog Record does; Malawian music, the artists, recording sessions, live touring, Malawian culture, as well as general studio nerdery.

This video is an introduction to Michael Mountain: Singer/songwriter, tobacco farmer, Rastafarian, from far up in the remote hills of the Nkhata Bay region in Malawi.

Short Bio:…

Previously released music:

(C) & (P) 2022 Spare Dog Records

Two Big Elephants – Teaser

Michael Mountain – Two Big Elephants: when the corrupt politicians fight for power, they are like two big elephants trampling the grass (and as Michael puts it: “we, the grass, keep on suffering”)

The recording of Michael Mountain’s upcoming album has been shaped by the pandemic in many ways – Michael is in Malawi; drums recorded in Jamaica; backing vocals in Sweden; and here am I in Bristol, UK, adding a guitar track to this energetic little masterpiece.

We plan to release the album later this year, a blend of Reggae, Ska and Singer/Songwriter. If you want to hear Michael’s previous work, have a listen over here:

Speaking to Mr Anders Olsson

At last, I’ve managed to track down the person who filmed this famous original Gasper Nali clip all those years ago! I finally had a phone call with him (a fellow Swede at that): Anders Olsson. In the 70s he was the co-creator of the travelling puppet theatre group Abellis Magiska Teater (Abelli’s Magical Theatre), and in the late 00s he visited Nkhata Bay, Malawi, and managed to get this wonderful clip recorded, including the dug-out canoe and the distant cloud of lake flies and all.  

We didn’t get a chance to talk for very long, but I’m curious to hear his story. He was keen to get in touch with Gasper again after all this time to see where things have gone since   …and I can’t help but wonder if the original capture is still there, and if there might be more video lurking somewhere, past the abrupt cut-off at the 2:59 mark! We’ll let you know 🙂

Uncovered Footage of Gasper Nali

This year has been a bit of a tough one. Gasper’s summer tour was cancelled and work on the upcoming album has been delayed – but it made me spend some time on backing up and archiving old videos, recordings and pictures from Malawi. And I came across this little gem of Gasper recording vocals for the track Mwana Jeni on the 2015 album Abale Ndikuwuzeni. Enjoy!

Tour Cancelled – Gasper Nali

It’s with a heavy heart that we must inform you that Gasper Nali’s Netherlands / Belgium / Malaysia tour for June-July 2020 has now officially been cancelled. Of course things had been looking bleak for a while, but with the Dutch government finally declaring all larger events outlawed until September, there’s no chance for it to happen this year.

With a number of excellent bookings now gone, we’re hoping for festivals and booking agents to come together and do a straight one year postponement with the same line-ups where possible, so that Gasper will have a chance to do this tour next year instead.

In light of this new situation, we’ll be planning some other exciting (yet social distancing-friendly) new project ideas for those of you who need another fix of Malawian music ASAP. We’ll keep you posted here on this web site and on our Facebook page. Tionana mtsogolo for now.

P.S. If you need Gasper’s music straight away, go to our Bandcamp page and check it out.


 22/6 Africa Oyé - Liverpool
22/6 Neuadd Ogwen - Bethesda
23/6 SOLAS Festival - Errol
26/6 The Canteen - Bristol
27/6 - TBA -
28/6 - TBA -
29/6 Glastonbury - Shangri-La
30/6 Glastonbury - The Common

The SDR Family is Growing

If you’ve wondered why it’s been a bit quiet from us lately, it’s all because of this brand new rock’n’roller demanding a lot of attention! Fear not, we’ll soon get this new member of the crew up to speed, and we’ve got some really exciting announcements in the near future. Stay tuned!