Top Flamenco Talent at Chicago Flamenco Festival 2017

Anabel Veloso – Photo by Oscar Romero (Bienal de Flamenco)

The Chicago Cervantes Institute celebrates, in collaboration with the SGAE Foundation, the Old Town School of Folk Music, the Flamenco Arts Center and the City Winery, will present the XV Chicago Flamenco Festival from February 24 to March 25.

During five weeks, this festival will bring together young flamenco artists as well as established stars of this genre in order to bring Spanish culture closer to Chicago.

In 2017 the lineup includes Anabel Veloso, Alfonso Aroca, Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, Alba Heredia and Isaac De Los Reyes, Amparo Heredia, Angel Ruiz, Las guitarras de España, Tamar Ilana, La Chimi.

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Flamenco Eñe Heads to New York, Miami and Chicago in March 2017

left to right clockwise: Alfonso Aroca; Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina; and UHF at Flamenco Eñe 2016. Photo by Jesús Domínguez

The SGAE Foundation will continue with its Spanish Flamenco promotion overseas program, Flamenco Eñe, with presentations in New York City, Miami and Chicago during March 2017. The artists featured include flamenco fusion acts performed by Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, pianist Alfonso Aroca and the instrumental flamenco quartet Ultra High Flamenco (UHF). All of them participated in the first edition of Flamenco Eñe that took place in Malaga last May 2016.

The Flamenco Eñe Malaga showcase brought together several foreign performing arts presenters and promoters with a selection of musicians from Spain.

The Flamenco Eñe initiative has opened the doors of the international circuits to Josemi Carmona & Javier Colina, Alfonso Aroca and Ultra High Flamenco (UHF), who will export their talent within the official program of Flamenco Festival 2017, held in New York and Miami between March 2 and 19, and the XV Chicago Flamenco Festival, organized by the Cervantes Institute, with the collaboration of the SGAE Foundation, until March 25.

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The Hybrid Sounds of Belgium’s Zanzibar

Zanzibar – Fiali in Chicago

Zanzibar – Fiali in Chicago (Home Records, 2016)

Belgian multi-ethnic band Zanzibar plays an unexpected mix of rhythmic Afropop music, harmonica-based American blues, boogie woogie, jazz, Haitian folk music and even a traditional African American prison work song titled “‘Berta ‘Berta”.

Zanzibar uses vocals in various languages, including English, French, Kirundi (language of Burundi) and Haitian Creole.

Band members include vocalist Desire Ntemere from Burundi on vocals; Belgian multi-instrumentalist Renaud Patigny on piano, keyboards, balafon, and vocals; Kankan Bayo from Guinea Conakry on percussion and vocals; and Belgian harmonica ace Genevieve Dartevelle, who also plays didgeridoo.

Genevieve Dartevelle delivers outstanding performances on the harmonica.

Fiali in Chicago is available from homerecords.downloadbox.eu

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WOMAD Charlton Park 2017 Reveals First Artists

Bombino – Photo by Ron Wyman

WOMAD UK has announced some of the artists scheduled to perform at the 35th edition of the acclaimed world music festival. The event will take place at Charlton Park near Malmesbury in Wiltshire during July 27-30, 2017.

The first set of artists announced include South African vocal ensemble Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Benjamin Zephaniah, the modern Balkan sounds of Serbian artist Emir Kusturica, Tuareg desert blues act Bombino, and Squarepusher side project Shobaleader One.

Other artists include Nubian pop band Alsarah & the Nubatones (Sudan/USA); Creole jazz, soul and rock music by Bokanté (USA/Guadeloupe); Chilean cumbia party masters Chico Trujillo; the Pacific Coast Afro-Colombian sounds of Grupo Canalón de Timbiquí; Welsh Celtic music maestro Jamie Smith’s Mabon (UK); Khmer Rouge Survivors (Cambodia); experimental folk artist Maarja Nuut (Estonia), The Nile Project (Egypt/Ethiopia and more); Nomade Orquestra (Brazil); Rajab Suleiman & Kithara (Zanzibar); Savina Yannatou (Greece); Spooky Men’s Chorale (Australia); Tom Middleton (UK); and Zhou Family Band (China).

Tickets and more details can be found at womad.co.uk

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Ballaké Sissoko and Vincent Segal to perform at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro

Ballaké Sissoko and Vincent Segal

 

Malian kora maestro Ballaké Sissoko and French cello virtuoso Vincent Segal are set to perform on Tuesday February 28 at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro, North Carolina.

The two musicians have developed a distinctive hybrid musical style that mixes traditional West African and European Baroque music.

The duo released a remarkable debut album titled Chamber Music, released in North America in 2011. Ballaké Sissoko and Vincent Segal continued the collaboration in 2015 with Musique du Nuit.

 

 

Tuesday February 28 at 8 PM
The ArtsCenter, 300-G E. Main Street, Carrboro, NC.

Tickets for this show are $22. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit artscenterlive.org or call the Box Office at (919) 929-2787.

Ballaké Sissoko and Vincent Segal will start their North American tour tomorrow. Tour dates:

Feb. 23, Berea College, Berea KY
Feb. 24, University of VT, Burlington VT
Feb. 25, Palais Montcalm, Quebec
Feb. 26, Le Gesu, Montreal
Feb. 28, The Arts Center, Carrboro NC
March 1, The Barns at Wolftrap Vienna
March 3, French Institute Alliance, New York NY
March 4, Villa Victoria, Boston, MA
March 5, North Beach Band Shell, Miami Beach
March 8, Old Town School of Folk, Chicago IL
March 9, Cedar Cultural Center, Minneapolis MN

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Tunisian Sensation Emel Mathlouthi to Perform in New York

Influential Tunisian vocalist Emel Mathlouthi is set to perform February 24th, 2017 at Joe’s Pub in New York City. Emel Mathlouthi is well-known for her role as a leading artist in the Arab Spring.

Born in Tunis, she was avoided by her country’s official radio stations but gained popularity through social media. She released her acclaimed first album, Kelmti Horra (My Word is Free) in 2012. Emel’s style is characterized by her commanding vocals along with a fusion of North African rhythms and modern electronic beats.

Her new album, Ensen, is scheduled for release February 24, 2017.

Joe’s Pub
425 Lafayette St, New York
Doors at 9:00 p.m., Show at 9:30 p.m.

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The Marley Brothers to Perform Together at Kaya Fest in Miami

Kaya Fest, an all-day musical event, will take place April 22 in Miami at Bayfront Park Amphitheater. The headliners are The Marleys: Ziggy, Damian, Stephen, Ky Mani with special guest Miss Lauryn Hill. Also performing are Sean Paul, Wycleff Jean, Inner Circle, Jo Mersa Marley, Skip Marley, Shacia Payne, and more to be announced.

In addition to great reggae music, Kaya Fest will focus on creating public awareness on the many uses of the cannabis plant. On April 21st the organizers have scheduled a free symposium with a panel of experts in the field of medical and industrial cannabis as well as the regulation aspects of the plant.

Medical Cannabis has recently been legalized in the state of Florida. The many health benefits of the cannabis plant have been reported to include treatment of glaucoma, control epileptic seizures, stop cancer from spreading, slow progression of Alzheimer’s disease, ease pain of multiple sclerosis, discomfort of arthritis, treatment of Lupus and Crohn’s disease.

Bayfront Park Amphitheater
301 North Biscayne Blvd, Downtown, Miami
Gates: Open 1:00pm

More at http://kayafestivals.com

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Acclaimed Mauritanian Musician Noura Mint Seymali to Perform in Philadelphia

Noura Mint Seymali

Crossroads Music will present Noura Mint Seymali, one of the leading acts from Mauritania, on Sunday, February 26, 2017.

Noura is a skilled ardin (a 9-string harp reserved only for women) player and vocalist. Her band features the psychedelic guitar lines delivered by her husband Jeiche Ould Chighaly.

The current band features a powerful rhythm section, composed of Ousmane Touré on bass and Matthew Tinari on drums. Noura Mint Seymali released Tzenni, her first full-length album widely available to international audiences in 2014. It was followed by Arbina in 2016.

7:30 pm
801 South 48th Street, Philadelphia

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Artist Profiles: Karan Casey

Karan Casey – Photo by Robert Hakalski

As a member of Solas for several years, Karan Casey has been critically acclaimed from Japan to the United States as one of Ireland’s greatest singers.

In 1993 Karan emigrated to New York City and began a jazz degree in Brooklyn’s Long Island University. Making the rounds of the sessions in New York she was asked to join Atlantic Bridge. Later she joined Seamus Egan, Winifred Horan, John Doyle and John Williams to form the group Solas.

The band recorded three albums in just four years, and won NAIRD (former independent record industry association) indie awards for each. They played with Bela Fleck, Iris De Ment, Jerry Douglas, Stuart Duncan, The Chieftains, Donal Lunny, Sharon Shannon and Paul Winter while touring extensively in the United States, Europe and Japan.

Karan Casey’s solo career has flourished since her separation from the band Solas. Casey’s voice is among the most beautiful in Irish folk music, and she is a wonderful interpreter of both contemporary and traditional material. Her use of grace notes and vibrato has become remarkably subtle.

Her album Chasing the Sun successfully combines traditional but sharp-tongued songs – such as the epic unaccompanied ballad “Jimmy Whelan” – with contemporary material that reflects Casey’s rising status as one of Ireland’s most politically-charged singers.

Her own compositions reveal increasing confidence and incisive social awareness, not least “When Will We All Be Free”, which attacked Ireland’s policies on immigration.

Karan Casey won awards for ‘Best Folk Album’ and ‘Best Folk Female’ from Irish Music magazine and was nominated for the BBC Folk Awards and the Danish music awards. She has performed on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion on public radio in the United States, and appeared at many prestigious venues and festivals.

Discography

Solas (Shanachie, 1996)

Sunny Spells and Scattered Showers, with Solas (Shanachie, 1997)

Songlines (Shanachie, 1997)

The Words That Remain, with Solas (Shanachie, 1998)

Seal Maiden (Music Little People, 2000)

The Winds Begin to Sing (Shanachie, 2001)

Distant Shore (Shanachie, 2003)

Chasing the Sun (Shanachie, 2005)

Reunion: A Decade of Solas, CD & DVD, with Solas (2006)

Ships in the Forest (Compass Records, 2008)

Two More Hours (2014)

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Artist Profiles: Cemîl Qoçgîrî

Cemîl Qoçgîrî

Composer and tenbur maestro Cemîl Qoçgîrî was born in 1980 in Duisburg, Germany. He’s part of a Kurdish-Alevi (Qizilbash) family from the region of Qoçgîrî in northern Dersim in eastern Anatolia. Cemîl Qoçgîrî currently lives in Mainz, Germany.

Alevism/Qizilbash is considered to be the continuation of ancient Anatolian-Mesopotamian belief systems, primarily Zoroastrianism. The tenbur (long-necked lute), the principal instrument played by Cemîl Qoçgîrî is fundamental to this musical heritage, not just as a musical instrument, but it is also deemed sacred by the Alevis.

Cemîl Qoçgîrî has incessantly worked on his own music projects and in 2004 published his first solo album “Ask-i Pervaz”.

In 2005, Cemil travelled throughout Dersim to capture on film perhaps the last living authentic dervishes. These travels were portrayed in a musical documentary titled “Sarraf.”

Cemîl Qoçgîrî released his second album “Heya – Songs of the Qizilbash” in 2007.

The third album “Hiva Zeri – Golden Moon” came out in 2012 and the fourth album, Tembur & Harp, was released in 2015 by Sony Music Classical.

Cemîl Qoçgîrî also took part in the acclaimed Hawniyaz project with Aynur, Kayhan Kalhor and Salman Gambarov. This album was released by Harmonia Mundi Latitudes in July 2016 and received the German Record Critics Award (Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik).

In addition to his solo projects, Cemil Qocgirî also produces and arranges film music as well as audio CD-productions with various renowned artists. He has collaborated with Aynur , Kinan Azmeh, Kayhan Kalhor, NDR Bigband, Morgenland Chamber Orchestra, Netherlands Blazers Ensemble, Mikail Aslan, Erkan Ogur, Salman Gambarov, and Tara Jaff.

Cemîl Qoçgîrî’s fifth solo album Zalâl was released in 2016. It features songs in the endangered Zaza language.

Discography

Ask-I Pervaz (Etno Music, 2005)
Heya – Songs of the Qizilbash (Kalan Music, 2007)
Rewend, with Aynur (Sony Music, 2010)
Hiva Zeri -Golden Moon (Ahenk Music, 2012)
Tembur & Harp (Sony Music, 2015)
Hawniyaz with Aynur, Kayhan Kalhor, Salman Gambarov (Harmonia Mundi Latitudes, 2016)
Zalâl (Ahenk, 2016)

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