17 April 2006

Monday's mp3: More Live=More Better

There's nothing like live music. I say that as someone who has an extensive collection of recorded music. But there's something about the magic of being there when music is being created.

Saturday night I hit two shows that proved this. First a visit to Traditions Cafe, for the creative jazz/blues arrangements of powerful, nuanced singer LaVon Hardison, who seems to relish putting new spins on old songs, like "Favorite Things" in 5/4, or "You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman" with a reggae lilt. She doesn't have an album out yet, but promises one soon. Then it was off to The Spar for a strong jazz quartet led by David Joyner. Also migrating between the shows was one Jeff Coffin, sax player for Bela Fleck & the Flecktones. He pulled out his horn and wailed along with Joyner's band in that kind of tight synchronicity achieved by musicians who speak the same nonverbal language. Exhilerating stuff.

I've also been learning some Ewe rhythms of late, providing some live music for an African dance class. More on the magic (and pitfalls) of live percussion at a later date.

Today's musical selection comes from your favorite Afropean band and was recorded live at radio station KCRW on 5 November 1999. It was issued on a limited-run promotional CD by Virgin Records.

[mp3] Zap Mama: "Rafiki (live)"
more Zap Mama music
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