New Deli (Evergreene Music 005, 2001)
New York-based TriBeCaStan is envisioned as sort of folk orchestra, although its sound comes closer to jazz swing combined with global music instruments, melodies and beats. The ensemble’s new album is titled New Deli.
TriBeCaStan is led by multi-instrumentalists Jeff Greene and John Kruth. Both musicians travel throughout the globe, researching folk music and collecting musical instruments. Some the countries they visited recently include Bosnia, India, Morocco, Western China, Cuba, and Uzbekistan.
“Everywhere I go, the musicians I meet want to hear and play American music, particularly, blues and country,” says Kruth as he smokes dates and eats tobacco. “Musicians all over the world listened to Curtis Mayfield and the Temptations. But for the last decade or two the shoe has been on the other foot. We’ve not only been inspired by world-class global musicians like Bachir Attar of the Master Musicians of Jajouka, Carnatic mandolin master U. Rajesh, and the Austrian hurdy-gurdy virtuoso Mathias Loibner, we invited them to play as guests on New Deli. ”
“As we say in TriBeCaStan,” adds Greene, “‘If your toes all face one way, you will walk crooked.’ This means we must be in solidarity with all of the world to find the right direction. If you dig around in the ’60s and ’70s in music from India, Thailand and Ethiopia you hear how the musicians borrowed from and reworked American music. We’re just doing the same thing, but in reverse.”
The line-up on New Deli includes John Kruth on mandolin, mandocello, banjo, flute, harmonica, Irish whistle; Jeff Greene on marimba, yayli tambor, mandolin, hurdy gurdy, flutes; Todd Isler on drums; Dave Dreiwitz on bass; John Turner on trumpet; Kenny Margolis on accordion; Boris Kinberg on conga, percussion; Scott Metzger on guitar; and Claire Daly on baritone saxophone. Guest musicians are: Steve Turre on trombone, conch shells; Bob Musso on vocals; Jim Clouse on soprano saxophone; Bachir Attar on ghaita; Matt Darriau on clarinet, alto sax, bagpipe, kaval; Jerome Desigaud on mobeke; Bruce Huebner on shakuhachi; Tine Kindermann on saw; Matthias loibner on hurdy gurdy; Tasmi Lynn on vocals, chris Morrow on trombone, U. Rajesh on electric mandolin and Badal Roy on table.
If the cover art style looks familiar, it’s because it was made by TriBeCaStan friend Cal Schenkel, who made some of the album covers for Frank Zappa.
TriBeCaStan’s latest venture, New Deli, presents the New York collective mixing various forms of American music such as jazz, blues and bluegrass with a wide-ranging selection of global sounds.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.