Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Songs for Desert Refugees...a compilation in aid of the refugees from Northern Mali

On January 17, 2012, insurgents fighting for the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (NMLA) attacked the town of Menaka in the far east of Mali. The fighting soon spread all over the deserts of northern Mali, provoking the most serious crisis that the country had faced since independence in 1960. Tens of thousands of Touareg, Songhoi, Peulh and Arab people fled from the fighting to the relative safety of neighboring countries. The result was the worst refugee crisis in the southern Sahara in decades. 

Songs for Desert Refugees features a superb mix of desert music, including rare or unreleased tracks by some of the world's best-known Touareg groups, from Mali (Tinariwen, Tamikrest, Terakaft, Tartit), Niger (Bombino, Toumast, Etran Finatawa) and Algeria (Nabil Baly Othmani, Faris). The music on this compilation is the sound of what the Malian deserts can be; intense, joyful, beautiful, proud, poetic and peaceful. It is dedicated to all those who are working to make it so again. All involved in producing the album gave their services for free. Other artists include: Ibrahim Djo Experience, Amanar and Tadalat.

As with 2005's Rough Guide to the Sahara, the 12 tracks, most previously unreleased and all postdating that prophetic piece of genre-making, progress like a single expression toward the showy new jack guitars of Tadalat and Bombino and the overdue female voices of Toumast and Tamikrest. --MSNBC Expert Witness

...the album as it stands is masterful, and certainly one of the strongest world music albums of the year. It serves equally well as an introduction to this exciting strain of guitar-based African music and as a new set of tunes for listeners already familiar with the genre. --Popmatters

  1. Amous Idraout Assouf d'Alwa (Tinariwen)
  2. Warktifed (Tamikrest)
  3. Blues du Désert Part 1 (Ibrahim Djo Experience)
  4. Derhan Alkher (Faris & Terakaft)
  5. Teswa Ténéré Desert Version (Nabil Baly Othmani)
  6. Ténéré (Amanar)
  7. Taghdart (Tadalat)
  8. Gourma (Etran Finatawa)
  9. Nak Essanagh (Terakaft)
  10. Aïtma (Toumast)
  11. Tigrawahi Tikma Live Version (Bombino)
  12. Tihou Beyatene (Tartit)

Sunday, March 3, 2019

The Rough Guide to the Music of the Gypsies....various artists

The great thing about the compilers of the Rough Guide albums has always been the enormous breadth of styles that they attempt to incorporate into whatever compilation they're making. The music on this album ranges quite literally from India to Finland to England and all points in between. 

The album starts out with an example of modern flamenco from Pata Negra, then moves into Italian gypsy music and an ultra-high-speed number from the Romanian Fanfare Ciocarlia. It then moves immediately into a slow lament from Greek singer Eleni Vitali. From this odd juxtaposition, it progresses into Rajasthani music, and then back to Asia Minor with a group from Istanbul. A selection from Albania follows, followed itself by the new ambassadors of gypsy music, Taraf de Haidouks. Another Greek musician makes an appearance, followed by a pair of flamenco works, one from the guitar master Tomatito and one from El Indio Gitano and Gerardo Núñez. The album then makes another heavy-duty stylistic change as it jumps to Finnish gypsy love songs and English harmonica-based folk songs. 

The album then returns to the more prototypical gypsy sound, with a Hungarian group reminiscent of early klezmer in many respects. A strained shawm-based dance from Kosovo follows, providing a look into the practice of instrument adoption into a culture. The album finishes off with cimbalom master Kálman Bálogh and his arrangement of a traditional number based on styles from Spain, Hungary, and Romania (the Spanish influence is particularly noticeable). 

1 –Pata Negra Yo Me Quedo En Sevilla
2 –Acquaragia Drom Ussa Sà
3 –Fanfare Ciocărlia Doina si Balaseanca
4 –Ελένη Βιτάλη The Song Of the Gypsies (To Tragoudi Ton Gifton)
5 –Musafir Anghuti
6 –Gypsy Music Of Constantinople Rast Tsiftetelli
7 –Kurbeti Love Birds (San Ta Dio Poulia)
8 –Taraf de Haïdouks Cind Eram La’ 48
9 –Kostas Pavlidis* Jastar Amenge Dur
10 –Tomatito Mundi
11 –El Indio Gitano & Gerardo Nuñez El Sereno De Mi Calle
12 –Päivi Ärling Olen Lapsi Minä Syksyjen Illan
13 –Jasper Smith, Levi Smith Cock O’ The North / Garryowen / Flowers Of Edinburgh / Step It Away / The Girl I Left Behind Me / Step It Away
14 –Jozsef Lacatos Fast Csárdas
15 –Krusha Madhë Kalandxój
16 –Kálmán Balogh Cigány Színek

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Various Artists : Routes: Africa, Europe, Asia and the World

Folk Roots Magazine celebrated its 20th Anniversary back in 1999 as the Bible, barometer and catalyst in Folk, Roots and World Music, Covering everything from American eegends to English traditional heroes, from Pan-African greats to wonderful discoveries from all over the planet. This double CD set, 'Routes', was specially compiled and sequenced by Folk Roots editor and radio presenter Ian Anderson and features some of the most exciting and inspiring music from Africa, Europe, Asia and the World.

Disc 1
1 Ndar (Senegal) - Youssou NDour
2 Amarrao Con P (Cuba) - Cuarteto Patria
3 Retany (Madagascar) - Tarika
4 La Citta Del Sole (Italy) - Re Niliu
5 Kufilaw/Take Care (Somalia) - Maryam Mursal
6 Teremtes (Hungary) - Marta Sebestyen & Muzsikas
7 Shima Jima Kaisha (Okinawa) - Nenes
8 Heygana (Mali) - Ali Farka Toure
9 Zolloko San Martinak (Basque Country) - Kepa, Zabaleta & Motriku
10 Ya Izzana (Sudan) - Abdel Aziz El Mubarak
11 Honsafotter/Gulerotter (Sweden) - Filarfolket
12 Amadou Faal (Gambia/Senegal) - Dembo Konte/Kausu Kuyateh
13 Guru Bandana (India) - Ali Akbar Khan/Asha Bhosle
14 I, Voyager (UK) - Trans-Global Underground
15 Lilizela Mlilizeli (South Africa) - Mahlathini & The Mahotella Queens
Disc 2
1 Orgullecida (Cuba) - Buena Vista Social Club
2 Maacina Tooro (Senegal) - Baaba Maal/Mansour Seck
3 Stis Akres Apta Matia Soy (Greece) - Eleftheria Arvanitaki/Stavros Logarides
4 Gamen (Sweden) - Garmarna
5 Lela-Lela (Congo) - Kanda Bongo Man
6 Ka Lei E (Hawaii/US) - Bob Brozman/Ledward Kaapana
7 Haidara (Guinee) - Jali Musa Jawara
8 Nikala (UK) - Najma
9 Speed The Traktor (Szegerely) - 3 Mustaphas 3
10 Oro Negro (Equatorial Guinea) - Hijas Del Sol
11 Sorban Palid (Indonesia) - Euis Komariah/Yus Wiradiredja
12 Urombo (Zimbabwe) - Thomas Mapfumo
13 El Gustito (Mexico) - Los Camperos De Valles
14 Zobi La Mouche (France) - Les Negresses Vertes
15 Malako (Kenya) - Samba Mapangala/Orchestre Virunga

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Kadonnut Manner - The First Train to Kajanaland (Finnish Primitive Guitar / solo instrumental fingerpicking)

Guitarist Lauri Manner, aka Kadonnut Manner, has recently released his album "The First Train to Kajanaland - Finnish Primitive Guitar vol. 2". Kajanaland (or nowadays more usually Kainuu) is the region in Northern Finland where he is from, and on the cover is a photo of the first train arriving there in 1905.  

Kadonnut Manner means "The Lost Continent", a kind of a pun on his last name that also sounds appropriate for making music while living on the European continent at times like these.

"Finnish Primitive Guitar" means it's guitar music very much influenced by John Fahey and other American Primitive Guitar players, and it's composed and played by a Finn. It's rhythmic and hypnotic music, scary and dissonant at some times, silly and playful at other and not overtly repetitive or pretentious at any point. The most usual feedback he gets from my live shows and music overall is that the listeners start floating off to elsewhere, conversations end in mid-sentence people and start recalling memories they didn't remember having. 

He was born in 1983 in Suomussalmi, took trumpet lessons and played in a brass band when he was 10, took up bass guitar when he was 15, dropped out of all formal music studies, formed a punk band and never looked back. Besides playing both kinds of music (punk and hardcore) he was always into "classic" rock, blues and the roots of the whole thing, so starting from some CCR tapes his uncle gave him when he was 10 years old, he got into Allman Brothers, country blues of Mississippi John Hurt, Skip James, Blind Blake and all those early acoustic blues players. 

Finally discovering John Fahey, Robbie Basho and Jack Rose playing this really unique music that has the drive and rhythm of the blues but with musical ideas that are all over the place was the thing that forced him to start learning fingerpicking guitar in 2015.

stream the album at the service of your choice:

Bandcamp: https://kadonnutmanner.bandcamp.com/album/the-first-train-to-kajanaland

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/6IrDIIu1SefefbN5MBG801?si=o_eDTHiMSAu8FpZda2F2uQ

Deezer: https://www.deezer.com/us/album/68095612

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/first-train-to-kajanaland-finnish-primitive-guitar/1410391074

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Ali Farka Touré...Niafunké...West African blues..a traditional album concerning Mali

Ali Ibrahim "Ali Farka" Touré (31 October 1939 – 6 March 2006) was a Malian singer and multi-instrumentalist, and one of the African continent's most internationally renowned musicians. His music is widely regarded as representing a point of intersection of traditional Malian music and its North American cousin, the blues. The belief that the latter is historically derived from the former is reflected in Martin Scorsese's often quoted characterization of Touré's tradition as constituting "the DNA of the blues". Touré was ranked number 76 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" and number 37 on Spin magazine's "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time".

As the first African blues man to achieve widespread popularity on his home continent, Touré was often known as "the African John Lee Hooker". Musically, the many superpositions of guitars and rhythms in his music were similar to John Lee Hooker's hypnotic blues style. He usually sang in one of several African languages, mostly Songhay, Fulfulde, Tamasheq or Bambara as on his breakthrough album, Ali Farka Touré, which established his reputation in the world music community.

Niafunké was released in 1999. The title reflects the name of the village in Mali where it was recorded. It is largely a traditional album concerning Mali.

Within the album liner notes Touré discusses his motivation for creating the album and how the music might relate to its audience. "This record is more real, more authentic. It was recorded in the place where the music belongs - deep Mali. We were in the middle of the landscape which inspired the music and that in turn inspired myself and the musicians. My music is about where I come from and our way of life and it is full of important messages for Africans. In the West perhaps this music is just entertainment and I don't expect people to understand. But I hope some might take the time to listen and learn." — Ali Farka Touré,

Niafunké marked the first of a series of albums he recorded towards the end of his career in his home town. The album was released around the same time he retired to his farm in a remote region of Mali.

find out more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ali_Farka_Touré

official website: http://www.worldcircuit.co.uk/#Ali_Farka_Toure

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Music from the Coffee Lands...A Putumayo Blend...various artists

The artists gathered together here hail from nations and cultures noted for the growing and export of coffee. Part of the proceeds from the album were earmarked for charity and any catchy idea that gets the music out there is a good thing. Like the luscious drink itself, the tunes come in many intensities and flavors, ranging from a light-as-air ditty from Peru, to the more complex vocal stylings of Colombia's Claudia Gomez, to Ricardo Lemvo and Makina Loca's earthy Afro-Cuban Congolese rumba. The album is a lively and fascinating travelogue, making landfall in Cuba, Kenya, Brazil, Uganda, Mexico, Zimbabwe, Costa Rica, Hawaii, and Peru. As with many other Putumayo projects, aside from its musical pleasures, this set would make an entertaining and educational experience for younger family members. 

  1. Guajira Bonita - Julian Avalos
  2. Soltarlo - Claudia Gomez
  3. Wasuze Otya? - Samite
  4. Maria Lando - Susana Baca
  5. Below the Bassline - Ernest Ranglin
  6. M'Ban Samba - Raimundo Sodre
  7. Hanzvadzi - Thomas Mapfumo & The Blacks Unlimited
  8. Dilema - Los Tradicionales De Carlos Puebla
  9. Esa Noche - Cafe Tacvba
  10. Gabby Kai - James 'Bla' Pahinui
  11. Kothbiro - Ayub Ogada
  12. Este Son (Costa Rica) - Juan Carlos Urena
  13. La Milonga de Ricardo en Cha-Cha-Cha - Ricardo Lemvo / Makina Loca

discover more music from Putumayo: https://www.putumayo.com

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Favela Chic Postonove 3 ... various Brazilian artists

  1. Tive Razao - Seu Jorge
  2. Olhos Coloridos - Sandra De Sa
  3. Babaneira - Emilio Santiago
  4. Spinning Wheel - Raulzinho Impacto 8
  5. Jesus Cristo - Erlon Chaves E Sua Banda Veneno
  6. Mexerico Da Candinha - Wilson Simonal
  7. Nao Vou Chorar - Os Diagonais
  8. Samba Vocalizado - Luciano Perrone
  9. Saco De Feijao - Beth Carvalho
  10. A Procura Da Batida Perfeita - Marcelo D2
  11. Sou Negrao - Rappin Hood
  12. A Danca Da Moda - Dj Dolores
  13. Forro Esferografico - Cabruera
  14. Beatboxsamba - Fernandinho Beat Box
  15. Hip Ho[ Nao Para - Ginger Ale
  16. Sao Joao Vila Rosali - Dj Dennis
  17. Vamnos Farrear - Pinduca
  18. Sunny - Eli Goulart E Banda Do Mato
  19. Olha Eu Aqui Oh Oh Oh - Evinha
  20. Minhas Razoes - Antonio Carlos

Friday, July 13, 2018

The Rough Guide to Rebetika...the music of the Greek underworld

Rebétika is the music of the Greek underworld, whose golden years started shortly after Greek national independence and lasted until the 1950's. A rich and heady stew, rebétika focuses on hopeless love, disease, drugs, death and imprisonment. As a musical form, it draws on numerous sources such as the formal instrumental suites of the Ottoman court, the solo vocals of Turkey and Iran, and the captivating, sophisticated instrumentation of the café aman in Istanbul and Izmir. The Rough Guide To Rebétika showcases some of the best rebétika artists from its early roots to the rising stars from the more recent revival movement.

website: https://www.worldmusic.net/

Monday, April 16, 2018

Éist: Songs in Their Native Language...Celtic music by various artists in the Irish language

If you enjoy Celtic music you will enjoy this - highlighting the language, lyric and melody of the Gaels in Ireland.

1) Altan: Molly na gCuach ni Chuilleanain
2) Seamus Begley & Mary Black: Ar Bhruach na Carraige Baine
3) Van Morrison & The Chieftains: Ta mo Chleamhnas Deanta
4) Brian Kennedy & Maire Bhreatnach: Eist, a Stor
5) Maura O'Connell: Aisling Ghear
6) Clannad: Seanchas
7) Frances Black: Jimmy mo Mhile Stor
8) Paul Brady: Gleanntain Ghlas' Ghaoth Dobhair
9) Sinead Lohan: Eist do Bheal
10) Mary Black: Mo Ghille Mear
11) John Spillane: Seachtain
12) Maighread ni Dhomhnail: An Cailin Gaelach
13) Kate Bush: Mna na hEireann
14) Christy Moore: Na Conghailihg

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Buckwheat Zydeco Menagerie The Essential Zydeco Collection

Stanley Joseph Dural Jr. (November 14, 1947 – September 24, 2016), better known by his stage name Buckwheat Zydeco, was an American accordionist and zydeco musician. He was one of the few zydeco artists to achieve mainstream success. His music group was formally billed as Buckwheat Zydeco and Ils Sont Partis Band, but they often performed as merely Buckwheat Zydeco.

The New York Times said: “Stanley ‘Buckwheat’ Dural leads one of the best bands in America. A down-home and high-powered celebration, meaty and muscular with a fine-tuned sense of dynamics…propulsive rhythms, incendiary performances.” USA Today called him “a zydeco trailblazer.” Buckwheat Zydeco performed with a large number of famous musicians from Eric Clapton (with whom he also recorded) and U2 to the Boston Pops. The band performed at the closing ceremonies of the 1996 Summer Olympics to a worldwide audience of three billion people. Buckwheat performed for President Clinton twice, celebrating both of his inaugurations.

official websitehttp://buckwheatzydeco.com/

This 11 track compilation released in 1993 features an excellent sampling of his music.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Real World Records Sampler 1995 by various World Music artists

Real World Records is a British record label started in 1989 by Peter Gabriel to record and produce world music, as well as his own releases. The label grew up alongside the success of the WOMAD festivals and Peter Gabriel's exploration of music from other cultures, and helped push world music into the general public's consciousness during the 1990's. Many of the label's releases are recorded at Gabriel's Real World Studios, at Box, Wiltshire.

see official website: https://realworldrecords.com/

This 10 track compilation released in 1995 features a good cross section of artists from the label.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Zorita release new track Calliope with amazing video...Bohemian meets African

Zorita are a raucous rousing rabble. The band’s bohemian music boasts an eclectic mix of instruments like organs, synths, trumpet and violin. In combination with bass, drums and guitars, as well as front man Carlos Zorita Diaz’ raw voice, this creates a completely unique sound. Blending influences from around the world into catchy pop songs, an evening with Zorita is guaranteed to breathe life into any party.

They recently released a new video for their single Calliope from their new album 'Aphrodite'. The song mixes African rhythms with indie-pop sounds. The video is a collage from 30's amateur video material shot in Kodachrome.

Stream the album and single on soundcloud HERE