Taha Elroubi

Name variation:
In Groups: T Kolai
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Taha Elroubi (one half of T.Kolai / A&R and also a partner in Vinylicious Recordings) was born in Germany in 1965 to a Sudanese father and Persian mother. He was introduced to the world of soul, funk, reggae and African sounds from a record collection that his father bought him at the age of 13 while living in Sudan. Through that collection he got introduced to the likes of Weather Report, Grover Washington Jr., the Temptations, The Jackson Five, Bob Marley, Shirley Bassey, Stevie Wonder, Brass Construction, Earth, Wind & Fire and the list continues. By age 15 he moved to Cairo to attend the American School in Ma’adi and would then travel to London every summer where he spent a couple of months vacationing with his family . During this period he started to discover the underground sound by listening to the various pirate stations and Capitol Radio. He then started hitting record stores such as Blue Bird Records, Record Shack in Soho, Unity Records, Flying Records in Kensington, Catch A Groove with Ricky Morrison in the house, now it’s Chillifunk’s home base, Black Market, Vinyl Solution @ Portabello Market and of course the dopest reggae store at Ladbroke Grove (the front line). In 1995 he moved to the United States to attend the American University in Washington D.C. It was then that he decided to get a couple of SL1200’s and try to express his vibe. On occasional weekends he would travel to NYC to see Timmy @ The Shelter or just listen to Humphries on the radio. In 1997 he got offered a one-night gig at Washington’s best venue at the time, The Fifth Column. At the end of that night he was offered a residency, which lasted until 1991, when he graduated with a BA in Finance, and moved back to the Sudan to join his family’s business. This kept Taha out of the music loop until 1997 when he returned to the United States once again, this time with a wife and daughter. In 1998 he was contacted by a couple of friends from back in the day and was offered to start a label that would be run by him. He accepted the offer with pleasure and it was at that time that Vinylicious Recordings was born. Inexperienced in the field of running a label the company got off to a rocky start from an experience point of view but all the releases have been top notch. A catalogue to be proud of until today. At the same time, Taha was approached by Fabio Beggiato, a successful Swiss Italian young man, owner of the hippest Italian restaurant in D.C., Sesto Senso, he offered Taha to be the resident DJ and music director of his upcoming club/lounge. In September, 1998 Andalu opened its doors to become Washington’s deepest and most soulful club.
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