Everyone sings love songs. For this week's offering, though, something special is in order. Voices that aren't just beautiful, they have a visceral impact, like the memory of a lover.
Two voices that came to mind are Vera Bila and Vusi Mahlasela. Vusi's on my mind because I had the opportunity to interview him last Friday (hear interview). The South African poet/singer/musician has an astounding voice, and this song highlights it as he sings about the need for love songs even amid the violence of a nation in upheaval. "Should I stop singing about love / Now that my memory is surrounded by blood / Sister, why oh why do we at time mistake a pimple for a cancer / So who are they who say no more love poems now?"
Bohemian singer Vera Bila has an amazingly distinct voice, and most frequently sings about Gypsy life, culture, and hardship amid a disapproving dominant culture. "Chaje, Chaje" translates as "My girl, my girl," and is a song about longing and distance. "My girl, my girl / Don't cry for me / I don't want you to wait two years / Till I come back."
[mp3] Vusi Mahlasela: "
[mp3] Vera Bila & Kale: "
[mp3] Interview with Vusi Mahlasela on Spin the Globe
[mp3] Full 2-hour Spin the Globe radio show from 10 February 2006