Africa’s Premier Diva Picks Diamond Series ELA M 251
Angelique Kidjo is pictured with her TELEFUNKEN ELA M 251 large diaphragm condenser microphone.
Angelique Kidjo, dubbed “Africa’s premier diva” by Time Magazine, has earned three Grammys, two for “Best World Music Album” in 2015 and 2016 and a third for “Best Contemporary World Music Album” in 2008. The gifted singer-songwriter and activist, noted for her diverse musical influences and creative music videos, is included in the BBC’s list of the African continent’s 50 most iconic figures.
“I discovered the ELA M 251 while working on my album ‘Djin Djin’ with producer Tony Visconti,” Kidjo recalls. “Listening to my singing voice, he told me he knew exactly which microphone would be able to capture the whole range and dynamics of my voice and we rented a 251 during the recording. I was so happy with the results that I decided to have my own, as I record a lot of vocals at home.”
Kidjo’s musical influences include the Afropop, Caribbean zouk, Congolese rumba, jazz, gospel, and Latin styles; as well as her childhood idols Bella Bellow, James Brown, Nina Simone, Aretha Franklin, Jimi Hendrix, Miriam Makeba and Carlos Santana. She now resides in New York City, where she is an occasional contributor to the New York Times. Kidjo has received Honorary Doctorates from Yale University, Berklee College of Music and Middlebury College.
“I heard the Telefunken factory was not far from New York,” Kidjo continues, “so one day we borrowed the mic we used for the album, drove to Connecticut and then I tried a few ELA M 251s in their studio to compare with the mic we brought. I picked the one that I fell in love with and this has been the microphone I have used on every recording ever since.”
The TELEFUNKEN ELA M 251 includes an edge-terminated, dual-backplate CK12 capsule capable of cardioid, omnidirectional, and bidirectional polar patterns. Each TELEFUNKEN reissue is 100% true in every detail to the original — the parts are interchangeable with the 50+ year old originals — and delivers the same sonically opulent response that has made the ELA M 251 one of the world’s most sought after recording tools.
TELEFUNKEN Elektroakustik strives for absolute perfection. By offering historic recreations of classic microphones alongside their own proprietary designs based around the distinctive tube mic sound, TELEFUNKEN has established a product line that expertly combines vintage style and sound with the reliability of a modern-day microphone design. TELEFUNKEN’s commitment to both the sonic excellence and quality of all of their products is rivaled only by their dedication to provide the best possible service to their customers.