We’re well and truly wired for sound this week with news of a fascinating project based in South Africa which travels out to remote communities to record and promote local music.
It’s all very appropriate as the temperature keeps on rising here in Suffolk, that we have music from a Mozambique and a real desert in Mauritania.
Criminals – Groenland (Montreal, Canada)
The Chase is the debut album from Montreal’s orchestral indie pop band Groenland, led by Sabrina Halde and Jean-Vivier Lévesque, and was released on Aprll 16th, 2013, via Bonsound.
With 20K copies sold and counting since it’s release and 45K downloads of their single Immune as free Single of the week on iTunes Canada, the opus received several nominations such as Album of the Year – Anglophone and Album Design at L’Autre Gala de l’ADISQ.
In 2013, Groenland toured across Canada while giving unforgettable performances at Osheaga and at M for Montreal and were also invited to play at the Festival Off-Courts in Trouville-sur-mer (France), while their song Daydreaming was used as the closing track for the season premiere of The Good Wife (CBS) and the song The Chase was used for an online British Airways ad.
This Is The Place - Sam Brookes (London, UK)
“There is something of a Tim Buckley about Sam Brookes…a sense of powerful fragility…vast emotional reserves at work” The Independent
Sam Brookes has become part of the burgeoning acoustic music scene, gigging around the UK on his own and with his contempories.
His songs are, fundamentally, beautifully crafted stories about familiar subject matters that captivate the listener. Musically, his immaculate phrasing and beautifully modulated delivery create echoes of giants like John Martyn and Tim Buckley.
Speaking of echoes, for me there’s just too much reverb washed over this production. I know that with that much it has to be a conscious production decision but I find myself longing to hear the raw recording.
He self-released his album Kairos in March. Watch out for him. I think he’s quite a talent.
You’ll be able to catch him at a few upcoming UK dates:
Jul 23 Wet Fish Cafe, London
Jul 24 Field Sessions – The Bat and Ball, Wisborough Green
Jul 25 Secret Garden Party, w/ Hot Feet, Huntingdon
Jul 29 The Prince Albert, Stroud
Jul 30 Green Note Camden, London
Aug 01 Lusty Glaze Festival, Newquay
Aug 02 Kendal Calling FestivalKendal
Stiff – Hot Pistol Shrimp (London, UK)
Inspired by the Stray Cats` image and the growling sound of Seattle`s rock, the trio combines unique attributes to complete their stage sound and appearance, as the three band members line – up in the front of the stage as equal members with George`s electric double bass in the middle and a quirky drum kit on the left side of the stage (no drummers left behind)
George George – Electric Double Bass, Vocals
Andrea Samengo – Guitar
Emily Dolan-Davies or maybe Danny Gebeshev or perhaps Ben Wollacott – Drums
Before It Gets Cold & Smile at Life – Sir Sultry (Los Angeles, CA, USA)
Led by guitarist and vocalist, Ethan Margolis, the Los Angeles-based Sir Sultry Quintet fuses elements of flamenco, jazz and blues and recently released its first full length album entitled “Soleángeles” (July 15th, 2014). The name, Soleángeles is derived from the combination of two words: Soleá (Flamenco’s mother song) and Angeles (Los Angeles). The album was recorded in both Los Angeles and Seville, Spain.
After having lived 11 years in southern Spain performing with Gypsy artists and having lead sold-out international tours, the 36 year-old Margolis arrived in Los Angeles with a mission to further bridge the musical cultures of Spain and American Jazz and Blues. “Soleángeles” is Margolis’s first album to be officially released with this purpose and is truly a remarkable work where he features some of the USA’s top jazz musicians as well as the collaborations of his Gypsy Flamenco artist friends from Spain.
There’s a show coming up at Alvas Showroom in LA on Saturday.
Eguetmar – Noura Mint Seymali (Mautritania)
From the Saharan capital of Nouakchott, Mauritania, Noura Mint Seymali embarked on a successful debut tour of the United States in September 2013, bringing sounds from the desert tents and urban courtyards where Moorish music lives to the American concert hall. From one of Mauritania’s most prominent Moorish griot families.
Tzenni (the album title) in Hassaniya means to circulate, to spin, to turn. It’s the name for a whirling dance performed to the music of Moorish griots, often under khaima tents thrown up for street gatherings in the sandy quartiers of Nouakchott and out across the wide deserts of Mauritania. Tzenni is an orbit, the movement of the earth around the sun, the daily progression of light and dark, lunar cycles, tides and winds. Tzenni, the dance, comes forth as the cyclical trajectory of a Moorish musical gathering builds to a fervorous pitch. It’s a word whose expansive valence reminds us how only the most basic reality can create such romantic metaphor.
Produced and recorded across an appropriately dizzying array of locations and social contexts (New York City, Dakar, Nouakchott) the album Tzenni is a contemporary articulation of Moorish griot music from Mauritania—an artform that has been evolving and gaining momentum for centuries—as voiced by Noura Mint Seymali, an artist profoundly steeped in its history and rigorously devoted to its global resonance.
Wired for Sound (S. Africa)
Wired for Sound is an innovative OSISA-funded mobile recording studio that aims to create opportunities for young artists to record and collaborate with more established musicians and explore local youth culture through musical expression. The appreciation of culture and stories of the everyday are unravelled through music and are documented through interviews, radio debates and radio documentaries.
The project is the brainchild of Simon Attwell, founding member of South African band Freshlyground, and radio producer Kim Winter in collaboration with Freshlyground guitarist Julio Sigauque. Wired for Sound in association with the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) assembled a mobile 4×4 recording studio, capable of exploring even the most isolated regions of the project’s 2013 destination, Mozambique. The mobile studio is configured to run off a solar panel and battery system, allowing the team unrestricted access to musicians who are not able to travel. Recording locations are then chosen according to acoustic quality, aesthetic appeal and cultural relevance.
Attwell explains, “Most of the tracks we recorded are the artist’s original material tweaked and worked on in collaboration with Wired For Sound or created from scratch for the Wired For Sound recording.” Artists receive copies of their tracks, which empower them to promote their profiles through community radio and Soundcloud accounts.
Thikukulola – Million Isaac Junior (Furancungo, Mozambique)
Million Isaac Junior is a young gospel singer with an impressive vocal range. His wish is that Mozambique be blessed with peace and he wants his fellow citizens to feel love through his music. He spoke to us about the harsh reality of being an unemployed subsistence farmer in Furancungo, like most of the young men in the area.
Mazano – Mateus Mapinhane Charles and Massimba Lanfa (Catandica, Mozambique)
Mateus Mapinhane Charles is a singer and teacher at the local school in Catandica, but his dream is to focus on music. He has set up a production studio at home where he records music for other local musicians and shoots music videos for them in his backyard, all done on his hand held digicam. Mapinhane’s music is influenced by the Chimurenga style music of neighbouring Zimbabwe.
There are a further 15 excellent tracks on the Wired for Sound album. We’ll be hearing a few more on the show but really, the best thing is to nip over to the project SoundCloud page where you can listen to most tracks and there are links to the iTunes and Google Play stores where you can download the whole thing.
A selection of tracks from Europe this week as we delve through offerings from France, Luxembourg and the UK including a couple of artists that were at The Great Escape.
Thanks to Nick, Amy, captjc, Josh and Sarah amongst a frankly gratifying number who got in touch to say, variously “Are you OK?” to “What about another SnC then?” I really have been pleasantly surprised that folks got in touch. It doesn’t happen often and, in this case, the timing was perfect. Thank you.
Badala – Badala Foly (France)
A native of the village of Djoliba in Mali, just along the Niger River not far from Bamako. These days he’s based in France and has an excellent album “Kirina Kono” which is available on iTunes.
Given the variety of local iTunes stores, it’s probably best just to search to find the music on yours.
Give Up – Monophona (Luxembourg)
Sound meets song: DJ and Producer Philippe “Chook” Schirrer and singer-songwriter Claudine Muno team up to create a music that’s both electronic and acoustic, equal parts analog and digital, where guitars and pianos meet samples and beats.
When Claudine and Chook first started discussing a common musical project in the winter of 2010, they came from completely different worlds. He had discovered DJ-ing as a teenager and soon made a name for himself not only as a turntable artist, but also as a drum&bass producer; she was a singer-songwriter touring with a folk-rock band and had an admiration for the likes of Tom Waits, Van Morrison and Joni Mitchell.
Neither one of them knew anything about the other one’s musical roots and influences. Yet, after having built successful careers in their respective fields, they were eager to take on a new musical challenge and search for common ground. The result of this collaboration is Monophona, a blend of two extremes, electronic and intimate, melodic and innovative.
Farmer Song – Dirty Primitives (Lille, France)
The band comprises Jean Bernard Hoste: singing, feet drumming and basic guitar along with David Bausseron: guitar, noise / Fuzz and More Fuzz! The minimalist duo’s music is described as “electric and noisy primitive”.
Located somewhere near the crossroads of stomp garage rock and blues folk noise. The line-up offers two electric guitars, a bass drum, a hi-hat, and a few touches of “random loop” electro. Dirty Primitives played their first concerts in 2011
Tiger Balm – Hollie Cook (UK)
From her latest album Twice which was funded via PledgeMusic and released while we were at The Great Escape in May.
She’s a ridiculously connected artist being the daughter of Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook. Her mother Jeni was a backing singer for Culture Club and Boy George is her godfather. However, her music stands up on its own.
She joined the re-formed Slits and performed on the band’s 2006 EP Revenge of the Killer Slits. These days she’s playing what she describes as “Tropical Pop” and doing it very well indeed.
We saw two performances at TGE one in the Speigel Tent but previously at The deliciously dark and underground Bermuda Triangle where the set, for me, had more energy and a rawness that I may be in a minority in enjoying. The Spiegeltent show was smoother and the album is, again, to my mind, rather drenched in “strings” which don’t really add that much to some great tracks.
Je Dois – From & Ziel (France)
From the most recent album J’ai vu l’amour by the French duo of Samuel Veyrat and Ian Zielinski who deceive their genre at Chanson Urbaine.
Their biography page simple states that “From Ziel read, write and sing. They also play the piano. And they saw love.”
They’re played the Théâtre de Pierres in Fouzilhon, just north of Béziers in SW France on Monday – take a look at the site ( http://theatredepierres.com ) It looks an amazing little stone-built community venue.
The Land You Belong – Charlotte (Luxembourg)
Charlotte’s Daylight EP is a cracker. The indie-electro band is named after singer and leader Charlotte Haesen who was born in Amsterdam but grew up in Belgium with a French-African mother and a Dutch father who are booth artists.
Since her first album Salomé was released in 2011, she’s hooked up with the Luxenbourgish musicians Jéromé Klein (keys and synth), Aloyse Weyler (dri-ums) and Pol Belardi (ebass and synths). Their collaborative album Da ylight was released last year and they have a new album scheduled for release soon. But don’t wait, you can pick up the Daylight album for as little a 4 euros on her Bandcamp page.
Du bist wunderbar mein kleines Schnabeltier & Firefox 330 000 – Shiko Shiko (Lille, France)
“Halfway between hedonistic Post Punk and Mutant Rock, Shiko Shiko creates epic compositions where furious rhythmic patterns are carelessly associated with wild guitar riffs and pop melodies. With a tremendous raw energy, their performances give to see a possessed band, expressing without any inhibition the emotion emitted from its music, as surprise as effective.
An intense whirlwind taking the audience as it goes though it, letting nobody cold.”
Their current album (and from which both tracks are taken is “Best New Bestiole” on Platinum Records on vinyl, CD and download.
This week we step back five years to a spring day in May 2009 when SnC was just 166 episodes old and we were enjoying the likes of Los Campesinos. Playing for Change was very new and Codger had hair beyond his shoulders.
Why? Well, whatever’s going on in my chest and throat isn’t responding to antibiotics and so talking and breathing (especially both at once) are proving problematic. I’d like to think that we’ll be back to normal next week but time will tell. Meanwhile enjoy this vintage SnC show …
A great mix of music this week from Wales, Italy, France, Israel, England, Philadelphia, Zimbabwe, Toronto and Bergen in Norway. Quite a mix of styles and a feature on an amazing collaboration project.Despite cold winds over the past week or so, one of the wild ducks was spotted on the top pond with her brood of nine chicks (right) … and I thought musicians were difficult to manage!
Drop it doe eyes – Los Campesinos! (Cardiff, UK)
From their album Hold on now youngster. It has indeed, been a while since we had Los Camps on Suffolk’n’Cool, they have been in Venezuela recently.
Gravity – Jambassa (Irpino, Italy)
From the EP The roots and the flowers (released Feb 29). The deepest roots of black music inspire and hold the electronic essence of Papa Lele and Gamino.This release explores the musical background of the irpinia crew confirming once again their unmistakable style. Recorded at Q-zone studio in Monteforte Irpino. 6 tracks from the same element: the earth!
Available on the A Quiet Bump net label – waiting for you to download.
“Two platinums vinyls, a mixer, a microphone, the EPS and Atari, the whole coupled with effects a such digital delay generated the bases of the exploration of Dub-Roots made in Irpinia. The first Dub tests under the name of Jambassa take life in the year 2000. Since then research of the ideal “flow” never stopped, as well through the scenic experiments into live, year studio with a work of production where still while passing by collaborations with musical groups, crew and artists of various musical horizons . Jambassa proposes a dj-set dub roots between the analogical one and digital, while dubbant into live the selections of their clean production accompanied by a skilful dj to the microphone, which makes it possible their live to be a true performance shared with a conquered public.”
Got all that?
Playing for Change
Playing for change is a multi-media movement established by Mark Johnson, as he says, “it was born out of the idea that we have to inspire each other to come together as a human race and that music is the best way to do this.
“The result of four years of travelling and recording is a remarkable series of films which bring the separate performances together into beautiful virtual collaborations. The video completes the illusion that the artists were all playing together. The effect is captivating and inspiring. I’d have every one of them on the show! Marley’s “One love” features, amongst others:Roberto Luti (Livorno, Italy) vintage National steel guitarMenyatso Nathole and Vusi Mahlasela (Mamelodi, South Africa)Surendra Shrestha and Tal Ben Ari “Tula”, (Tel Aviv, Israel and Barcelona) Manu Chao (Barcelona, Spain), Junior Kissangwa Mbouta (Kinshasa, Congo), Rajhesh Vaidhja (Chennai, India)Washboard Chaz (New Orleans, USA) among many others.
Update June 5 2014
It is episode number 3 and has to be seen, so here it is!
From the award-winning documentary, “Playing For Change: Peace Through Music”, comes an incredible rendition of the legendary Bob Marley song “One Love” with Keb’ Mo’ and Manu Chao. This is the third video from the documentary and a follow up to the classic “Stand By Me” and the incredible “Don’t Worry.” Released in celebration of Bob Marley’s birthday on February 6th, this tribute to the legend is performed by musicians around the world adding their part to the song as it traveled the globe.
Order the CD/DVD Playing For Change Songs Around The World” now at amazon.com!
Playing For Change “Songs Around The World” is now available at your neighborhood Starbucks and everywhere music is sold.
Order the “One Love,” “War/No More Trouble, “Stand By Me,” and “Don’t Worry,” videos and the new Songs Around The World album now at itunes!
Sign up at playingforchange.com for updates and exclusive content. You can also buy cool stuff in our new online store!
Join the Playing for Change Online Street Team at:
Join the movement to help inspire people from around the world to come together through music
Here’s the latest episode from Playing for Change now up to number 90!
Today’s featured Song Around The World is Marvin Gaye’s classic “What’s Going On”. This track began with an acoustic guitar in Africa and legendary drummer James Gadson in Los Angeles. Next we added the Electric guitar and bass on the streets of Chicago and strings in Serbia. As we traveled the world musicians where added and PFC Band members Clarence Bekker and Titi Tsira layered the vocals while Sara Bareilles added the final verse in Washington Square Park, NYC. Years in the making, minutes to watch but something we can all believe in: MUSIC !
Icons among us (last week’s feature)
Comment from director Michael Rivoria and the Icons among us production team:
Peter, thank you for featuring “Icons Among Us” in your show!! I just listened to it and it was really great. I thought the commentary was right on the mark. This doc really was created to show just how much the music has progressed as well as evolved. You really picked up on that. The word “jazz” no longer has to equate to being complex , boring or even historical. This generation of players listen to all sorts of different genres, from rock to hip-hop, etc.. which is influencing the sound and rhythm of the music.
Thanks again. Love listening to your show!
~ M. Rivoira and the Icons team.
That feeling – Triplexity (Israel and France)
From their 2008 album Live in Triplex City available on Jamendo and as a great quality FLAC version in return for a donation on their site.Three musicians from three different countries making music together without ever having met: such a story could only happen on Jamendo.
And it’s the story of Triplexity.SaReGaMa and Nikila were two Jamendo users exchanging good reviews about their music. Not just out of politeness, but because each one really appreciated the other’s work. And then one day of 2007, after SaReGaMa asked Nikila to send him the separate tracks of a composition of hers he really liked so he could remix it, their first collaboration was born, “Morning”, followed by a full album, …Not Too Far. This would lay the foundation of what would become the sound of Triplexity: smooth, introspective and mostly instrumental electronica.And when SaReGaMa wanted to do something “more world music-influenced, more organic”, he turned to another Jamendo musician, Hamel1, who plays sax, clarinet and guitar. From this new three-way collaboration came out the track Three 4 Ten. “This was a milestone for Triplexity”, says SaReGaMa.
The fact that SaReGaMa lives in the woods of Mount Carmel (Israel), that Nikila is a Belgian citizen currently based in France, that Hamelin lives near Narbonne (South of France), and that the three of them have so far never had an occasion to meet physically was no obstacle. “The way Triplexity works is radically different from the ‘rehearsal/concert” model, and that’s a really interesting experience, explains Hamelin. I often compare it to studio work, only deferred.”
So, will the members of Triplexity meet one day? Maybe even play a gig? There are no such plans so far, but who knows. “I hope to meet my fellow musicians one day, perhaps for a beer, says Hamelin. The idea of making Triplexity a live band is still far-fetched, but nothing is impossible!”
She sells sea shells – Joey Nightmare (Chichester, UK)
The first of two tracks by artists playing next week at the Get Wanted show at 333 Mother Bar in London”s fashionable Shoreditch.”Hailing from Chichester, the band combine Minus The Bear-style technicality with catchy-as-hell saccharine dance-pop. We’ve got high hopes forthe live show these guys (and girl) can pull off, they’re amazing!” – New Slang, Banquet RecordsFor my money it is beautifully constructed, intelligent pop with enough light and shade and rhythm changes to keep me interested and wanting more. Let the band know what you think – they really do want to hear.
Spiders – Officer Roseland (Philadelphia, USA)
With the music industry undergoing a drastic facelift, Officer Roseland continues to look for new and innovative ways to reach listeners tired of stale formula and slick mass-production. Aside from employing an arsenal of guerrilla promotional techniques in support of Stimulus Package, their concept album with a distinctly satirical edge, skewering the crass commercialism of the recording industry—and of American society at large—with the warped sense of humour that has become the band’s signature.On top of that, the energy, close harmonies and some great rich voices combine to create a sound which is at once classic and yet really refreshing. Clever how they do that!The band also offers a regular podcast, “Roll Call”, available through iTunes, and live concert feeds on their website.
Mudzimu Ndiringe – Hallalujah Chicken Run Band (Zimbabwe)
Analog Africa is a new series from Alula Records featuring rare legendary recordings from seminal bands that formed the explosive Zimbabwean music scene in the 1970s.
“The Lion of Zimbabwe”, Thomas Mapfumo, is Zimbabwe’s biggest star, one of the most legendary and best-selling African artists of all time. In 1973, Mapfumo helped form the Hallelujah Chicken Run Band and, for the first time, began to shift his music away from Western-influenced rock and explore the traditional music of his Shona people, transcribing the scale of the traditional instrument mbira (or thumb piano) to guitar with his guitarist Joshua Dube The HCR Band was one of the first to develop the staccato style of guitar for which Zimbabwe is known today, and was also one of the first modern groups to sing in the traditional Shona language – a major act of liberation and an act of protest against the Rhodesian government. This compilation presents 18 of the Hallelujah Chicken Run Band”s biggest and most influential hits, recorded from 1974-1979 and all painstakingly remastered.
Hallelujah Chicken Run Band “Mudzimu Ndiringe” (mp3) from “Take One” (Alula Records) Buy at Rhapsody Stream.
Brand New – Emilie Mover (Toronto/New York)
Emilie Mover was conceived in Miami Beach, Florida at the Paradise Beach Hotel. She was born in Montreal on a snowy November evening. She grew up in Toronto and spent some time in New York City where she began singing jazz with her father, saxophonist Bob Mover. She later moved back to Toronto, where she began to play guitar and write songs soon after. She began playing them for an audience at age 20 at the Tranzac Club in Toronto and has been doing so ever since.
Apparently the writers of Grey’s Anatomy have a bit of a thing for Emilie, as this is her second song to get featured within an episode of the show this season. For those who can’t get enough of Emilie, be on the lookout for yet another song of hers to be in an upcoming episode of CBS’s Ghost Whisperer which airs Friday nights at 8.16 May 2009
Available on CD Baby and iTunes linked from her site
Dark side of the blues – Alexandria Quartet (Bergen, Norway)
Topping the bill at Get Wanted next Wednesday (they also played the very first Get Wanted night back in November last year. Based in Bergen, Norway’s main student city and the country’s unofficial pop epicentre, the Quartet have been holed up in studios and rehearsal rooms for the last 18 months polishing their album.
Martin Skålnes – vox, git, keys
Øystein Braut – guitars
Kim Åge Furuhaug – drums
Chris Holm – bass