WorldBeatUK (9th Show) - Broadcast Notes (27/4/11)
Tagged with: Worldbeatuk Glyn Phillips Rhubarb Sergent Garcia Show of Hands Susana Seivane Anxo Lorenzo Ojos de Brujo Gnawledge Camarao de Rama Gypsy Groovz Owiny Sigoma Tamikrest Dub Colossus Shawn Lee Quique Neira C-Sharp Ebo Taylor Imam Baildi Bongomatik Strut
WBUK9 (27/4/11) Show Notes
1 Intro-Mat (1:47) Matchatcha Nyekesse (Melodie)
Hope you’ve all had a good Easter and enjoyed the good weather; now that it’s turned a bit colder, hopefully you’ll all be thinking “Nah, bit parky this evening, think I’ll stay in and be warmed up by the groovy choonz and tropical vibes on WorldbeatUK!” So without further ado and maybe even a little bit of adon’t, we’ll kick off with El Salsamuffinero Mayor, Bruno ‘Sergent’ Garcia, and a track from his new album (“Una y Otra Vez”) out on Cumbancha. This one is called “El Baile del Diablo” - The Dance of the Devil.
2 El Baile Del Diablo (4:00) Sergent Garcia Una Y Otra Vez (Cumbancha)
Now that last tune was all about the devil’s dance that the politicians and the world’s leaders indulge in as they continue to muck our lives around - as El Sargento says: “One Step Forward, Two Steps Back”. Well this next group also wrote a song criticising those same politicians, leaders and power-hungry people - the track was called “Arrogance, Ignorance and Greed” off the album of the same name by English Folk giants Steve Knightley and Phil Beer of Show of Hands and I played that one a few weeks back.
So now another one off that same album, but this time spelling out their views (which I happen to share) about Creationism. This is called “Evolution”. With the rallying call of ‘Nail your colours to the mast’, the message is “The finger points in one direction, that’s natural selection”
3 Evolution (3:26) Show Of Hands Arrogance, Ignorance and Greed
(Hands On Music, 2009, HMCD29)
Well to show a bit of balance here’s a tune that’s related to a religious theme. It’s called “Camiño Longo” which means the ‘long route’ and is from an album (on the Do Fol Musica/Boa label from Spain) called “Cantigas de Camiño”. The album, which comes with an exquisite little hardback book, is dedicated to music based around the famous Pilgrims Route to Santiago de Compostela in Spain’s Northwestern region of Galicia. This is the beautiful singer and bagpiper Susana Seivane.
4 Camiño Longo (4:01) Susana Seivane Cantigas Do Camiño (do Fol Musica/Boa)
There’s been so much good stuff coming out of the Spanish region of Galicia that I’m including it as one of the three points of what I consider to be Spain’s Golden Triangle of Creativity (which also includes Catalunya in the North-East and Andalucia in the deep South of the peninsula).
Here’s yet another example from Galicia - the brilliant bagpiper Anxo Lorenzo and a track from his debut album “Tirán” (which also include guests appearances from Ireland’s Eoghan Neff on violin and England’s most famous exponent of the Northumbrian pipes, Kathryn Tickell). The album’s released on the Spanish Zouma Records label. This track is also called Tirán.
5 Tirán (ends at 4.10ish) (4:30) Anxo Lorenzo Tirán (Zouma)
Ok, over to the second point of my Golden Triangle: Catalunya, home to Barcelonan super-group Ojos de Brujo. They hit the scene with a bang just 10 years ago and have consistently delighted the world music fans and confounded their detractors with their very personal, idiosyncratic and uncompromising approach to music, business and life.
Word has it that they’re finally splitting up to concentrate on personal projects and so have just released what is, I suppose, their final album (which is released by Warner Brothers Spain). Some critics have accused them of laziness because it contains only two new tracks, the other 11 having all been released before on their other albums.
But the title kind of gives it away: “Corriente Vital: 10 Años” (which roughly translates as ‘the Essential Current - 10 years); it’s obviously a retrospective - but with a band of the quality of Ojos de Brujo, there’s an amazing back catalogue to choose from - so there’s definitely no fillers here!
What they’ve done is to hand all the tracks over to different producers and allow them to remix them as they want. So, yes, it is a new album - it’s like meeting up with an old friend for a last dance; they just happened to have had their hair redone and put on a new outfit - but they still move just as well as before! This track is “Todos Mortales” - originally from their 2009 “Aocaná” album - but here remixed and featuring Roldan from Orishas.
6 Todos Mortales (3:23) Ojos De Brujo Corriente Vital 10 Años (Warner Music Spain)
Staying in Spain still, we’re heading South to the final point of my Golden Triangle of Spanish Creativity, to the huge province of Andalusia on the South Coast, the jumping off point for the Moorish influx that so influenced Iberian culture.
And high up in the Sierra Nevada, the home of the amazing Moorish palace and gardens of the Alhambra you’ll find one of the most stylish, yet also most funkiest and bohemian of Spanish cities, Granada.
This is home to a brilliant band - or maybe I should call it a project - called Gnawledge. Put together by American musicologist Canyon Cody and rapper Gnotes, they fuse Andalucian flamenco with North African Gnawa music and jazzy hip-hop sensibilities and more, so much more, utilising a cast of top flight Granadan musicians including Juan Habichuela “El Nieto” on guitar, Otoman Almerabet on Laúd, Eneko Alberdi on guitar, DJ Doblegota on Scratch and loads more amazing musicians. I absolutely LOVE these guys! This is from their “Granada Doaba” album (on the Gnawledge label) and a track called “Perro Cruzado”.
7 Perro Cruzado (3:57) Gnawledge Granada Doaba (Gnawledge)
Ok, we’re going to leave Spain now, but just to show how difficult that is, this next track is a wonderful piece of maracatú-flamenco from Brazil! The band is called Banda Camarão de Rama and is based around the Miguez family: father, Gilvan, daughter, Aline and son, Daniel from Belo Horizonte, in Minas Gerais. The track is entitled “A Bala”.
8 A Bala (2:57) Banda Camarão de Rama
Complete change of pace and place now as we head back over the Atlantic to Europe and back to that Balkan Gypsy Music Festival in Guca, Serbia I mentioned a couple of weeks back. This is part of a 35 minute long jam between 75 balkan brass musicians and 10 nyabinghi drummers; the track is called “Hot Water Festival” (this is part 4) and it’s from the album Gypsy Groovz Orchestra Goes Tutti Mundi: “Night Train for Lovers and Thieves” on the German Network Medien label.
9 Festival Tople Vode Part 4 (3:10) Gypsy Groovz Orchestra Night Train for Lovers and Thieves (Network)
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10 Margaret Okudo (dub) (4:18) Owiny Sigoma Band Owiny Sigoma Band (Brownswood)
That last track was called “Margaret Okudo” by the Owiny Sigoma Band, and is from their forthcoming album. There’s an interesting story attached to it:
Two years ago on the eve of the inauguration of President Obama, five musician friends from London who’d know each other since school days pitched up in Nairobi, Kenya, East Africa as part of a loose, informal collaboration organised by the voluntary organisation Art of Protest to promote local Kenyan musicians and partner them with British ones to see what came out of it all.
The London lads met with the phenomenal teacher and player of the East African nyatiti - an 8 string lyre - Joseph Nyamungu, a man steeped in traditional Luo music; he in turn introduced them to drummer Charles Owoko - also steeped in Luo rhythms and the 7 piece got together to find common ground in a disused factory in downtown Nairobi - the only studio big enough to take them all - since most studios in the capital cater only for rap and RnB productions, ie a computer and one mic!
They named the band after Joseph’s grandfather, Owiny Sigoma. Next year they reconvened in Nairobi, this time as a 10-piece band and recorded the album at the Kenya National Theatre - a collection of gloriously loose afro-grooves which sway between Luo and London.
Most of the songs are written by Joseph and based on Luo folk songs. However they must have done something right, because they were picked up by Brownswood Records and championed by none other than Gilles Peterson, who’s really into the drum and bass heavy sound, and Damon Albarn of Gorillaz fame, who also pops up on a couple of the tracks on the album. The album’s also called “Owiny Sigoma Band” and is due to be released next week on the 2nd May on the Brownswood Records label.
Ok, sticking with Africa, but this time shifting over to Mali, here’s a band I’ve also played before. Part of the new generation of Tuareg Desert Rockers, this is the young band Tamikrest, from Saharan Mali, and a track from their new album released only two days ago by Glitterhouse Records. The album’s called “Toumastin” and this track is entitled “Tidit”.
11 Tidit (4:15) Tamikrest Toumastin (Glitterhouse Records)
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12 Wey Fikir (4:20) Dub Colossus Addis Through The Looking Glass (Real World)
Wasn’t that dreamy and beautiful! You’ve just heard the brilliant Dub Colossus, an Anglo-Ethiopian collaboration between Nick Page, aka Dubulah of Transglobal Underground and Syriana, and masses of fantastic Ethiopian musicians from the Addis Ababa scene (which includes jazz and rock and hip-hop and soul as well as traditional music).
The wonderfully delicate vocals on there were handled by Ethiopian pop star Tsedenia Gebremarkos. So much great music on that album - it really repays listening to again and again to extract all the hidden flavours! I’m absolutely loving it! That track was called “Wey Fikir” from the album “Addis Through The Looking Glass” by Dub Colossus and it too was released only two days ago on the 25th of April and is on the Real World Records label.
Well, I can only really follow that with a track by Shawn Lee’s Ping Pong Orchestra - who incidentally will be appearing at Birmingham’s Mostly Jazz Festival on Friday 1st July this year - and what else but a dark, jazzy piece called “Ethio” from the album “World of Funk” on the Ubiquity label.
13 Ethio (3:42) Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra World Of Funk (Ubiquity)
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14 Afrodesia (2:41) The Afro Soul-Tet Afrodesia (Ubiquity)
That last track - drenched in tropical rain storms - was an old track called “Afrodesia” from the heyday of jazzy afro-psychedelia and was by the Afro Soul-Tet from their album also called “Afrodesia”. Originally a very limited pressing of between 500-1000 on the Banyon label from Los Angeles sometime between 1968-71, it’s now been reissued by Ubiquity Records.
Something different now. This is a track I’d originally planned to play last week, but my interview and live session with Brazilian percussion genius Renato Martins overran somewhat and I had to drop it. Well, now I can reinstate this lovely piece of Chilean reggae - this is from the king of South American reggae, Quique Neira - off his album “Jah Rock” (on the German label GLM) - and a track entitled: “Dar y Recibir” (To Give and To Receive):
15 Dar y Recibir (4:35) Quique Neira Jah Rock (GLM)
And from a classic reggae style to very much up-to-date Jamaican reggae-pop with a latin-cum-RnB feel; this is C-Sharp - a band I’ve played a lot this year - and probably the most clubby commercial piece I’ve heard of their’s, with at least one verse in Spanish too! They’ve got a new album coming out this year called “The Invitation”. This is called “Dancin’ Like Crazy”.
16 Dancin Like Crazy (3:14) C-Sharp
- - - CONTINUOUS - - -
17 Calypso Cha Cha (2:52) Count Lasha & His Calypsonians Soundman Shots: The Caribou & Downbeat 78's Story (Snapper Records)
Ha ha! Bet you didn’t see that one coming did you? From contemporary Reggae pop to the sound of 1950s Jamaican mento (masquerading as Calypso) mixed with Cha Cha Cha taken from some rare 78’s! Very early fusion then!
And yet people forget that there has always been quite a bit of influence between the neighbouring islands of Jamaica and Cuba. Very many Jamaicans went to work on the sugar plantations in the East of Cuba and learnt Spanish and soaked up the rich cultural soup of Santiago de Cuba and took this back to JA; similarly I met many old Cubans who had learned English either from Jamaicans or in Jamaica themselves.
That was Count Lasha and his Calypsonians from a great compilation double album on the Snapper Records label called “Sound Man Shots: the Caribou and Downbeat 78’s Story” and a track entitled, funnily enough, “Calypso Cha Cha”.
Ok, sticking with the whole half-a-century ago feel, this is from one of my favourite labels, Soundway Records, (who recently released the excellent Colombian compilation of 1960s tunes called “Cartagena!”); this time it’s still in the Caribbean but looking at the French speaking Caribbean and an album released in 2009 called “Tumbélé! Biguine, Afro & Latin Sounds from the French Caribbean, 1963-1974”, which concentrates on the French-speaking and - to this day - still French-administered islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe. A fantastic retrospective of yet another hidden part of the Caribe.
However, the track I’ve chosen is actually by a band from Haiti who happened to spend a few years living and working in Martinique and who recorded several LPs there, mostly heavy ‘compas’ for the Hit Parade label. The band is called Les Loups Noirs de’Haïti (the Black Wolves of Haiti), the track was recorded in 1972 and is a manic biguine written by Gardner Lalanne and featuring some bizarre, almost psychedelic, approximations of a jet plane taking off, with crazy sax, distorted guitar and a rhythm section that is almost tripping over itself with excitement. Absolutely love it! This is called, appropriately enough, “Jet Biguine”.
18 Jet Biguine (3:26) Les Loups Noirs D'Haiti Tumbele (Soundways)
Wonderful madness! OK, in the last of my oldies (for the moment at least) this is a funktastic, groovalicious slice of Ghanian Afrobeat from someone who I’ve featured before on this show, Mr Ebo Taylor from the excellent album “Life Stories - Highlife and Afrobeat Classics 1973-1980” - a double album of Ebo’s work with different bands and all very, very enjoyable. It’s on the Strut Records label and was released a few weeks ago. The track I’ve selected has guitar maestro Ebo Taylor alongside Uhuru-Yenzu and a track called “What Is Life?”
19 What Is Life? (4:38) Ebo Taylor & Uhuru-Yenzu Life Stories -
Highlife & Afrobeat Classics 1973-1980 (Strut)
Did I say last of the oldies? Well, Yes and No. Those Greek brothers Lysandros and Orestis Falireas, better known as Imam Baildi (who incidentally take their name from a middle eastern aubergine dish which translates as “The Priest Faints”) - well, these inveterate mashers and mixers of rebetiko have worked their magic on yet another old Greek tune this time it’s the singer Meri Lida and a track called “Thlipsi”.
20 Thlipsi (Remix) (3:20) Meri Lida/Imam Baildi The Imam Baildi Cookbook (EMI Greece)
Ok, we’re slipping up to the last 20 minutes or so of the show, so let’s press on. This band I discovered only recently - and I’m so glad I did. They’re from the Netherlands, they’re called “Bongomatik” and they play the most delightful mix of latin, funk and pop.
This is off their eponymous debut album (and if you’re wondering why I’m using all those big words again - ‘eponymous’ is just another word for ‘self-titled’ - Aw, come on guys, there are thousands of words in the dictionary, it’s a crime not to try and use them all!).
It’s a great album, a whole lot of fun, highly recommended, not long released. It’s published by No Can Do Music on the Distribution label and this track is called “Donde” (if you like Cuba’s Omara Portuondo you’ll recognise it… eventually!).
21 Donde (5:11) Bongomatik Bongomatik (No Can Do / Distribution)
Continuing with the Cuba connection, this is a band that England’s Tumi Music label are pushing a lot. They’re called To’ Mezclao (which means “All Mixed Up”) and that reflects their musical standpoint - since the album covers salsa, latin pop, son-fusion, latin house, reggaeton, merengue, cumbia and bachata.
Naturally, the album is called “Hibrid” (or Hybrid), it’s on the Tumi Music label. They’ll be touring the UK this summer between mid-June and mid-July and promise to be a very exciting band live. The track I’ve chosen is a piece of latin pop called “Mango Bajito”
22 Mango Bajito (3:11) To'Mezclao Híbrid (Tumi Music)
Sticking with latin this is one of my all-time favourite salsa tracks. Of all the salsa dura - or hard salsa - tracks, this is one of the most ‘dura’. It’s by Mr Hard Hands himself, Ray Barretto. It’s from the double album compilation “Fania Records 1964-1980: the Original Sound of Latin New York” released this year by Strut Records. And the track is the MONSTER tune that is: “Indestructible”
23 Indestructible (4:14) Ray Barretto Fania Records 1964-1980:
The Original Latin Sound of New York (Strut)
Thanks to one and all etc…
I’m going to hand over to Olbi Iyah and his show “Version Galore” with reggae of all sorts and styles and periods. And to ease you into that, this is probably my favourite track of the night. This is LUSHNESS personified! Mr Sonny Bradshaw and the Sonny Bradshaw Seven from the Trojan Sixties Box Set 1, this is “Love is Blue”. Good night, see you next week for more worldly grooves!
24 Love Is Blue (3:19) Sonny Bradshaw Seven Trojan Sixties Box Set 1
WorldBeatUK (7th Show) - Broadcast Notes (13/4/11)
Tagged with: WorldBeatUK Glyn Phillips Rhubarb C Sharp Seth Lakeman Berroguetto ialma Serjao Loroza Parno Grazst Gypsy Groovz Blind Boys of Alabama Michel Ongara Oswin Chin Behilia Jolly Boys Bellon Maceiras Imam Baildi Azucah Manteca Rudeboy Rigolitch Huun Huur Tu
Show notes for WBUK7 (13/4/11)
1 Intro-mat (1.47) Matchatcha Nyekesse (Melodie)
Welcome back to another edition of WorldBeatUK right here on Rhubarb Radio. My name’s Glyn Phillips and for the next two hours I’ll be taking you on a musical journey around the oceans of world music.
On the show tonight we’re going to be sailing down to Galicia in Northwestern Spain for some fantastic folk-fusion, cruising over to the Caribbean for some reggae and mento from Jamaica and some papiamentu son from Curação, riding the iron horse to hear some gospel from Alabama, and on up to Canada for some afro-jazz fusion and ska, and somewhere along the way we’ll be calling in at Brazil, Kenya, Greece and two widely differing parts of Russia (St Petersburg in the Northwest and Siberia in the South East) as well as attending a wild gypsy festival in Southern Serbia. Just don’t say I don’t ever take you out anywhere…!
First up tonight let’s get it on - and get in the mood - with some ‘Lovers Rock’ from Jamaica’s C-Sharp - this is “My Love”:
2 My Love (3.35) C-Sharp
Well, ya feelin’ all loved-up now? Ready for a change of pace? This is England’s current face and voice of young English folk, Seth Lakeman, and the rocking title track off his 2010 album called “Hearts & Minds”:
3 Hearts & Minds (3.53) Seth Lakeman
And talking of folk music, last week I played you some glorious folk music from Galicia: the remote, verdant, Celtic region of Spain.
It went down so well that I’m returning there for a number of tracks tonight, kicking off with the first Galician band that really rocked my boat - the multifarious, multi-talented Berrogüetto and a track from their brilliant 2001 “Hepta” album on the Spanish Boa Music label.
This is called GaliATmatiasDOTtacom - or it might even be Galiamatiastacom - difficult to tell! Anyway, wrap yer lug’oles round this!
4 Galiamatiastacom (3.42) Berrogüetto Hepta (Boa Music)
And sticking with Galicia a wonderful band of women called Ialma. In celebration of their 10 year anniversary these five beautiful singers or ‘cantareiras’ have just released a new album “Simbiose” (which means “Symbiosis”) on the De Fol Musica label, which fuses traditional folk with everything from rap to medieval music. This particular funky jazzy song is entitled “6am”.
5 6am (3.40) Ialma Simbiose (De Fol Musica)
The Galician language, Galega, is very similar to Portuguese, and Portuguese is also the language of Brazil. Which takes me very nicely onto the next track.
Serjão Loroza is a singer/composer from Rio de Janeiro who is also a comedian, as well as an actor of stage, film and TV. He’s well known for his tracks in the ubiquitous Brazilian style of MPB (musica popular brasileira) as well as samba, rap, soul, funk, reggae and beyond.
This laidback tune - with a peculiarly Brazilian reggae undercurrent - is from a live concert by Serjão and his band Us Madureiras and is entitled “A Dois Passos de Paraíso” (Two Steps from Paradise) . . .
6 A Dois Passos do Paraíso (3.44) Serjão Loroza Serjão Loroza & Us Madureira
Last Friday (8th April) was officially the International Day of the Roma and I’d like to give a shout out and a BIG big up to Rhubarb Radio’s very own ElliNoire and her Balkanic Eruption night. If you weren’t there, you missed another winning combination of gypsy joy and balkan madness.
I’d especially like to mention the Romany Diamonds from Poland, a trio of Roma musicians who mesmerised the audience using just an acoustic guitar, an accordion and the astounding voice of the violinist. He was no mean violinist either, I can tell you! All the more amazing considering they had to follow a very large, amplified Balkan-style wedding band called Aistaguca from Nottingham! So if you get the chance check them out!
OK so that must mean it’s now time for some Gypsy music. Parno Grazst are a Hungarian Roma gypsy ensemble founded in 1987. Their name means ‘White Horse’, whereby white is a symbol of purity and the horse a symbol of freedom. Their debut album “Rávágok a Zongorára” which translates into English as the much-easier-to-say: “Hit The Piano” reached No 7 on the World Music Chart Europe in Oct 2002. This is the title track from that and I’m dedicating it to the lovely ElliNoire whose balkan show you can hear on Rhubarb Radio tomorrow at 1pm. Opre Roma!!
7 Rávágok a Zongorára (2.44) Parno Grazst Rávágok a Zongorára (ie ‘Hit The Piano’) PPR Records
More Roma madness, this time from Serbia and the wonderful Gypsy Groovz Orchestra led by trumpeter Ekrem Sajdic. They are joined here by no less than 7 other ensembles on a huge jam which was recorded and made into a compelling album. This is the first part (“Djul Zulejha”) and the third part (for which I don’t have a name) of a 35 minute piece called “Festival Tople Volde” (which translates as ‘Hot Water Festival’), recorded last year, I think, at the Guca Festival.
Their management described this recording to me as - and I quote - “made by 75 brass musicians from South of Serbian village Vranjska Banja and 10 nyabinghi rastafarian drummers of freedom who played together on live 35 minutes long song as 1-100 catharsis.” Nope, I don’t understand what that means either - but who cares, the music’s great! The album is on the Network label and is called “Night Train for Lovers and Thieves”. The Gypsy Groovz Orchestra Goes Tuttimundi!
8 Festival Tople Volde (Pt 1: Djul Zulejha) (2.10) Gypsy Groovz Orchestra Goes Tuttimundi Night Train for Lovers and Thieves (Network)
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9 Festival Tople Volde (Pt 3) (4.06) Gypsy Groovz Orchestra Goes Tuttimundi Night Train for Lovers and Thieves (Network)
Now, the last few weeks I’ve been trying to balance the music on the show between uptempo and slow, between country and urban, and between dancefloor fillers and those of a more medit-at-ive nature and there’s usually one tune every show that demands a certain level of aural attention and openness of mind, yet delivers in turn a special spirituality or transcendency. The next track is one of those. It’s a collaboration between the Bulgarian vocal group Angelite, the Moscow Art Trio and the Siberian overtone singers Huun Huur Tu. Recorded at a live concert (always so much better than dead ones, I find!) this track - called “Fly Fly My Sadness” - is 10 minutes and 28 seconds of ethereal sonic beauty . . .
10 Fly Fly My Sadness (10.28) Bulgarian Voices Angelite, Huun Huur Tu & The Moscow Art Trio Gone To The Dogs sampler (Jaro)
Well, that certainly was music for the soul - and this next track is too, although in a more overtly religious sense. From Central Asia and Eastern Europe we’re going all the way to the Deep South of America and to the Blind Boys of Alabama.
Formed over 70 years ago in 1939 (yep, that’s what I said: 1939) by a group of young men from the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind, they have consistently poured out heartfelt gospel and RnB songs full of lush harmonies and deep roots, decade after decade. In that time they’ve won five Grammy’s, as well as a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and profoundly influenced countless artists from the genres of gospel, blues, rock’n’roll, soul and rock.
This track is a preview taken off their forthcoming album to be released on May the 9th called “Take the High Road”. It’s on the Saguaro Road Records label and is distributed by Proper Records and it’s the first time the Blind Boys have released a traditional country-gospel album.
Co-produced by Jamey Johnson it features guests spots by Willie Nelson, Lee Ann Womack, The Oak Ridge Boys and Hank Williams Jr amongst others. However the track I’ve chosen features just the Blind Boys themselves, so that you can really hear what all the acclaim is about.
So come on, scrub your neck, comb your hair and put on your Sunday best, boys and girls - let’s go to church: “Jesus, Hold My Hand”!
11 Jesus Hold My Hand (4.31) The Blind Boys of Alabama Take The High Road (Saguaro Road/Proper)
- - - CONTINUOUS - - - - - -
12 Nashanga (5.15) Michel Ongaro Senta Lain
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13 Intro-Mat (1.47) Matchatcha Nyekesse
You’re listening to Rhubarb Radio. I’m Glyn Phillips and this is WorldBeatUK - 2 hours of the best world music coming at you live from the Custard Factory in Digbeth, Birmingham, in the United Kingdom.
Before the jingle break you heard the sounds of The Blind Boys of Alabama with “Jesus Hold My Hand” followed immediately by - coincidentally - another blind musician: multi-instrumentalist Michel Ongaro from Kenya and a track called “Nashanga” from his album “Senta Lain” - which mixes up traditional Kenyan benga music with soukous, gospel and cuban son - and that’s on the Dutch label Hippo Records.
If you’re wondering what the music is that I use as my theme tune for WorldBeatUK that came after that and you hear at the start of the show, it’s called “Intro-Mat” and is by Congolese guitar supremo Diblo Dibala and his band Matchatcha.
Details of all the tracks that I play can be found on my own world music website: www.worldmusic.co.uk - couldn’t be simpler! (so go to: www DOT World Music DOT co DOT uk) FORWARD SLASH ‘radio’ and look for the details there. We usually post them straight after the show - or by the next day at the latest.
OK, let’s set sail again and take our imaginary clipper up the Baltic Sea past Estonia and Finland onto Russia where we’ll dock in the ancient city of St Petersburg. There we’ll find a band called the St Petersburg Ska-Jazz Review playing a South African melody done Russian ska stylee!
If any of you own or once owned a 1962 album called “Swinging Safari” by Bert Kaempfert & his Orchestra then you might well recognise the melody. This is called “Skokiaan”!
(14) Skokiaan (3.23) St Petersburg Ska-Jazz Review Too Good To Be True (Megalith)
Lot of fun, lot of fun, the St Petersbug Ska-Jazz Review and Skokiaan!
Well we might have disembarked from the ship, but it’s time now to get on yer bike! Toronto-based Canadian band Mr Something Something are as well known for their methods of powering their shows as for their music. The band have taken the energy-wasteful music industry head on and are seriously trying all kinds of ways to reduce their carbon footprint. And one of those ways is via their Soundcycle system.
Audiences at their shows are asked to personally power the band using 10 special bicycles hooked up to dynamos that can create a current of about 200 watts per bike. The energy is stored in a bank of batteries and used to run the band’s equipment during concerts; the audience volunteers each spend about 10-15 minutes on average cycling during a show and it’s proved a big hit with them, giving a new outlet for dance floor activism.
And the music? Well it’s a sort of loose blend of jazz and afrobeat. Check it out. This is from their last album “Shine Your Face” and it’s called “The Antidote”.
(15) The Antidote (5.13) Mr Something Something Shine Your Face
When British people think of the Caribbean the default image is usually of Jamaica - or maybe Barbados, Trinidad, St Lucia or any other of the English speaking West Indies.
There are those who might be into latin american music and who will add Spanish speaking islands such as Cuba or Puerto Rico into the equation, or Francophiles who will mention Haiti, Guadeloupe and Martinique to the list.
But how many people are familiar with the Dutch speaking Caribbean? - Oh Yes, it exists! - in particular the islands of Aruba, Bonaire & Curação - or as they are often known: the ABC islands. ABC. Aruba, Bonaire, Curação… Geddit?
The great little Dutch label “Otrabanda Records” have long since sought out and tracked down all manner of artists and musics that deserve better attention and in the weeks to come I hope to play some of their recordings from the Pacific Coast of Colombia as well as vintage afrobeat, afrorock and electric highlife from Ghana.
But today I’m going to play you a piece by one of Curação’s most revered musical icons, Mr Oswin Chin Behilia from his album on Otrabanda Records called “Liber”.
The music shares many similarities with Cuban son - and there is a vibrant interchange between the ABC islands and their much larger neighbour, Cuba, to the North and with their nearest neighbour, Venezuela, to the South; but you’ve probably never heard the language before - it is the indigenous creole language of the islands called Papiamentu - a hybrid between Cape Verdean creole, Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish, English, Sephardic Jewish Ladino, Arawak and various African tongues. This track is “Den Bo Kushina”.
(16) Den Bo Kushina (3.32) Oswin Chin Behilia Liber (Otrabanda Records)
Staying in the Caribbean and a group I featured two weeks ago this is the fantastic Jolly Boys from Jamaica and another track from last year’s “Great Expectation" album on the GeeJam label. The last time I played their version of Amy Winehouse’s hit “Rehab”; this time Steely Dan get the jollification treatment.
Some people, like my mate Neil, don’t like Steely Dan;
I, however, do - connected forever in my mind as they are to a wonderful summer spent hitch-hiking around Europe and in particular an amazing car journey through Western France on a warm balmy evening rolling along the French highways against a deep peachy-orange sunset and to a soundtrack of East St Louis Toodle-oo, Show Biz Kids, Bad Sneakers, Reelin’ In The Years, Bodhisattva and Rikki Don’t Lose That Number. Yes, I know, all terribly indulgent - but it’s my show and I’ll play what I like.
This time The Jolly Boys work their stripped-back mento magic on Steely Dan’s “Do It Again” - quite an appropriate title for a band who take their name from a strap-on female pleasuring device . . . (Steely Dan, that is! No, seriously!)
(17) Do It Again (3.21) The Jolly Boys Great Expectation (Gee Jam)
And talking of Doing It Again - here’s a track that I’d promised you all last week and had to pull at the last minute. From one of my favourite French producers, mashers and remixers of the moment, this is M’siou Rigolitch and his metal-reggae mash-up of Martinique’s Papa Tank and Australia’s AC/DC (yep, you heard right!) and a track called “Back In Babylone”.
(18) Back in Babylone (4.13) M’siou Rigolitch (AC/DC vs Papa Tank)
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(19) Ska Father (1.54) Rudeboy Shut Up and Dance (Socan / Stomp Records)
Yes, yes, yes! That was the sound of Canadian ska band Rudeboy from Ottawa and off their 1998 album “Shut Up and Dance!” - a track I’m sure loads of you recognised as the theme from the Godfather film - that was the “Ska Father”.
Here’s another upbeat offering - returning to the Galician focus I had earlier on, this is a great number from the Bellón Maceiras Quinteto from their recent album “Folk Fusion” on the De Fol Musica label - called “Licantropia”’.
(20) Licantropia (4.09) Bellón Maceiras Quinteto Folkfusion (De Fol Musica)
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(21) Azul Graso (3.53) Berrogüetto Hepta (Boa Music)
And there you had another track from a Galician band I played earlier, Berrogüetto, from their "Hepta" album and a special guest adding a bit of Hungarian groove on the cimbalom, Kalman Balogh, and a fantastic piece called “Azul Graso”.
Now here’s a piece of folk from the other end of Southern Europe, in this case Greece, as the international mash-up phenomenon that is the Falireas Brothers’ band: Imam Baildi take a traditional song by Dimita Galani and give it the cumbia dancehall treatment courtesy of MC Yinka. This is “Ta Hartina” and I defy you not to bounce up and down to this!
(22) Ta Hartina (4.16) Dimitra Galani (Imam Baildi rmx) The Imam Baildi Cookbook (EMI Greece / Sonic Bids)
Coming up towards the end of the show now - just another couple of tracks or so to go!
From the free download compilation album “Azucah Selectah” on the Latino Resiste! label and project, this is a mad piece of latin jungle by DJs Caballo and TMFK, featuring a compelling guajeo and some heavy, heavy, heavy effects!! “Azucah!”
(23) Azucah! (4.12) Caballo & TMFK Azucah Selectah
And if that wasn’t enough for you this is another mad drum’n’bass treatment of urban latin funk. Formed for Edinburgh’s Hogmanay Festival in 2001 by Colombian singer Martha Acosta & bassist Javier Fioramonti, the band Manteca released this heavenly slice of dancefloor locura off their 2009 album on Freestyle Records called “Planet Latino”. Are you ready? “Tremendo Boogaloo”!
(24) Tremendo Boogaloo (4.03) Manteca Planet Latino