We've been questioning the word since the beginning, but we haven't found a better one. We talk about diversity, we talk about multiculturalism. But, eventually, people recognise the word world music ... Everything is world music nowadays.Well, not everything. But I'm of the same mind; until someone comes up with a better term, at least when you say "world music" people know you're talking about something besides rock, pop, and whatever else major-label record companies are trying to sell Pepsi with this week.
--Justo Diaz, artistic director of Cafe Carnivale, a world music concert series (see full story from The Australian)
For those of you in the Northwest, some sad news. The World Rhythm Festival -- the largest free rhythm festival in the world, which normally held each spring at the Seattle Center -- will be taking a hiatus in 2006. Organizers say it will return better than ever in 2007. Read more about it at swps.org.
On the plus side, the second annual World Sacred Music Festival in Olympia takes place Saturday May 13. If it's as good as last year's, this festival should become a permanent fixture in the world music calendar, and is well worth the trip if you're anywhere nearby. Performers aren't posted yet, but other info is at olysacredmusic.org.
Spin the Globe featured live music by Scott Nicolow (Olympia) and Joe Frost (Chicago) yesterday. Joe is also an accomplished visual artist, creating amazing reproductions of fossils and Egyptian tomb carvings (that's one of his to the right). For another image and his contact info, see Spin the Globe's playlist.
Now, here's a subjective list of some music well worth listening to. Music from several of these has been posted here recently.
SoundRoots / Spin the Globe Top 10 World Music Albums - January 2006
1. Various Artists: Sound of the World
2. Fantazia: Mul Sheshe
3. David Krakauer & Socalled: Bubbemeises
4. Afro-Fiesta: Afro-Fiesta
5. Toumani Diabate & Ali Farka Toure: In the Heart of the Moon
6. Tactequete: Tactequeque?
7. Candido Oye-Oba: Adura Power
8. Eliseo Parra: De Ayer Mañana
9. Trio Mocoto: Beleza! Beleza!! Beleza!!!
10. Refugee All Stars: Living Like a Refugee