23 September 2008

World Music Miscellany

It's fall cleaning time, and here are some tidbits that recently landed in SoundRoots' inbox:

Six Degrees Records has a new blog, where they highlight new releases (yes, their own releases) and have some free mp3 tracks: globalnoize.blogspot.com

WOMADelaide took place way back in March, but if you missed it you can still catch some of the audio goodness through podcasts posted at serendipsy.wordpress.com, including interviews and performances from the likes of Toumani Diabate's Symmetric Orchestra, Susana Baca, and Cesaria Evora.

Intrepid Norwegian Trond is again spearheading the World Song Festival, an internationally judged competition of songs from many, many nations. I've been a judge in the past, and he's now looking for new judges. If you think you've got what it takes to listen to and score something like 100 songs from around the world, email: trond.skara [at] gmail.com
Fela! - a new musical - on SoundRoots.org
I haven't seen it, but I sure would if I were on the other coast in the next couple of weeks. The new musical Fela! has been extended through Oct. 15. Directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones, the show is described as a journey into "the extravagant, decadent and rebellious world of Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti. Using his pioneering music (a blend of jazz, funk and African rhythm and harmonies), Fela! explores Kuti's controversial life as artist, political activist and revolutionary musician."


I'd have a conflict if I were in New York this weekend, however, since I'd have to decide between Fela! and a show by guitarist/vocalist Lionel Loueke from Benin and bassist/vocalist Richard Bona from Cameroon. They're doing two sets Friday and Saturday nights at The Allen Room, Frederick P. Rose Hall, Home of Jazz at Lincoln Center, on Broadway at 60th St., NYC. Doesn't that sound tasty!

My favorite global newspaper, The Christian Science Monitor, is celebrating 100 years in the business with special features on a new website section at www.csmonitor.com/100

The Guardian has an engaging interview with Reem Kelani in which she talks about the late poet Mahmoud Darwish and the precariousness of Palestinian existence, and lists ten key people and styles to know if you're interested in Arabic music.

I'm enjoying the increasing number of videos showing up on Vimeo, which are consistently higher quality than those on YouTube. The latest comes from Latin rock outfit Cordero. The describe their song Ruleta Rusa as “a dance song about the end of the world.” The band stands at the end of the world and recreate a modern version of the Greek myth of Moirae, three mythical creatures who measure out fate the way a spinner measures out a thread. I'll leave you with that as the concluding bit of world music miscellany today. Enjoy, and be sure to send SoundRoots other bits of global music news.

Cordero, "Ruleta Rusa" from Bloodshot Records
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