The Rough Guide To World Music: Africa & Middle East (RGNET1181CD) highlights the dynamic and everchanging world music scene, and is released in conjunction with the latest edition of the book (The Rough Guide to World Music: Africa and Middle East) that has become known as the ‘World Music Bible’.
From Afro-beat to Congolese Soukous, and from Tuareg music to Arabesque, this release introduces some of the key African and Middle Eastern artists and styles; popular and classical, new and traditional.
European and North American interest in non-Western music has grown exponentially in the last two decades. The third edition of the The Rough Guide To World Music book now fills three entire volumes, one of which — Africa and Middle East — is addressed in this compilation. Compiled by DJ and reviewer, John Armstrong, The Rough Guide To World Music: Africa & Middle East CD is an insightful overview of some of the best loved artists from these two immense continents. From Mory Kanté and Oliver Mtukudzi to Ofra Haza and Amr Diab, the album showcases a selection of the greatest talents to have emerged from both regions.
The CD begins its journey in the United States’ Ethiopian diaspora with celebrated singer Gigi, before moving on to sample a range of musical genres from across the continent, including the unique ‘synchro system’ style coined by King Sunny Ade, stunning kora playing from Mory Kanté and a track by the great Oliver Mtukudzi, one of the most significant artists to have emerged from the region over the last quarter of a century.
Crossing the Sahara desert – with tracks by Mariem Hassan and Etran Finatawa – the CD journeys north to Egypt and the sounds of Nubian master drummer Mahmoud Fadl juxtaposed with Amr Diab’s unmistakable pop. Also featured is Ofra Haza’s signature song ‘Im Nin’ Alu’ – an instant hit in Israel when it was released in 1985 and a continuously popular dancefloor track around the world.
Though it would be impossible to cover every facet of African and Middle Eastern music in one album, The Rough Guide To World Music: Africa & Middle East addresses the curiosity of the independent traveler who may have heard Congolese rumba and soukous in Central and East Africa, Afro-beat and Highlife in Anglophone West African countries, kwaito and township jive throughout Southern Africa and pop shaabi and rai throughout North Africa and the Middle East. The aim is to highlight some of these significant genres, providing a well-considered, balanced introduction to the sounds of a vast, musically exhaustive region.
This album contains a data track that includes an interview with the compiler John Armstrong and music information from The Rough Guide To World Music book.