A group of three friends has gotten together to build pianos in Rwanda. After the closure of the only piano factory in South Africa years ago, there are currently no piano makers in Africa. The Rwandan workshop intends to build upright pianos with an African twist, using local materials to make it affordable.
Tomasz Kukurba was born in Cracow, Poland in 1969. He started playing the violin in elementary school. At the age of ten he sang in the Cracow Philharmonic Choir and toured Germany and France, performing the works of Krisztof Penderecki.
During his time in high school, at the age of fourteen, he started to play the viola, which became his main instrument. Kukurba worked with the avant-garde jazz ensemble Mixtura. Like the other members of Polish band Kroke he studied classical music at the Music Academy of Cracow.
He was member of the Academy’s String Quartet and various other chamber orchestras, playing primarily the music of Penderecki, and joined, along with Tomasz Lato, the Sinfonietta Cracovia and an experimental jazz group.
Oisín Mac Diarmada was born in 1978 in County Clare, Ireland. He learned how to play the fiddle at a young age. Oisín later moved to Co. Sligo where he developed a deep interest in the playing style of the North Connacht region. He won various competitions for young musicians.
His first solo album, “Ar an bhFidil” (Green Linnet) was released in 2003. Oisín is one of the founders of acclaimed contemporary Irish folk music group Téada. Oisín is also a regular solo performer and appears as guest soloist with various other acts.
Oisín was awarded a Research Studentship by Dundalk Institute of Technology, pursuing postgraduate studies under the direction of Dr. Fintan Vallely in the area of “Political Identity & Movement to Music”.
Mats Edén was born October 30, 1957 in Södertälje, Sweden. has his roots in the rich soil of Värmland. A member of acclaimed Swedish folk ensemble Groupa since its inception in 1980, he also writes the majority of the band’s material.
Having studied composition at Norway’s Musikkskole in Oslo, it comes as no surprise to those familiar with Mats’ playing that he is a nationally recognized master accordionist, having earned the distinguished title of ‘Riksspelman’ (master musician).
His violin work is at once elegant and jagged and distinguishes the band’s sound with his own combination of the sounds of Värmland and of Norway. Mats’ third solo album Milvus (with Jonas Simonson) was released on the ECM label. He has also toured the United States of America and Europe with Ale Moller and Lena Willemark in the ECM project Nordan.
* Unga Värmlandsspelmän (Caprice, 1977)
* Lika många fötter i taket som på golvet, Oktober (1978, Amigo)
* Höppesving (Amigo, 1980)
* Av bara farten, with Groupa (Amigo, 1983)
* Vildhonung, with Groupa (Amigo, 1985)
* Utan Sans, with Groupa (Amigo, 1988)
* Månskratt, with Groupa (Amigo, 1990)
* Struling (Amigo, 1992)
* Imeland, with Groupa (Amigo, 1995)
* Nordan (ECM, 1996)
* Agram, with Nordan (ECM, 1997)
* Läckerbiten (Amigo, 1998)
* Milvus (ECM, 1999)
* Tokpolskan, with Ellika Frisell (Giga, 1999)
* Lavalek, with Groupa (Xource, 1999)
* Avtryck (Amigo, 2001)
* Träd, with Niss Kerstin Mattsson (Amigo, 2001)
* Fjalar, with Groupa (Xource, 2003)
* Vägen In, with Tina Quartey (Amigo, 2004)
* Crane Dance, with Jonas Simonson m.fl. (Nordic Tradition, 2006)
* Milvus (ECM, 2008)
* Frost, with Groupa (Footprint, 2008)
* Apple Blossom (2015)
La Barberia del Sur was a Madrid-based group formed by some of the foremost talents of the 1980s Flamenco scene, descendants of the purest dynasties. The youngsters dared to venture out and experiment with their traditional music combining it with a variety of musical forms: pop, jazz, salsa, etc.
The members of were:
Pepe Luis Carmona, nephew of the well known flamenco guitarist Pepe Habichuela Pepe Luis is a flamenco singer in the strictest sense of the word: a master of all the traditional forms of the art.
Enrique Heredia: another heir to a family tradition, that of the Montoyita dinasty, who throughout the years have demonstrated their mastery of all sides of flamenco: guitar, song and dance. He has worked with both the most esteemed flamenco artists and some of Spain’s leading pop musicians.
Juan Jose Suarez in the son of Ramon El Portugues, nephew of Porrina and a first cousin of Gypsy rumba group Los Chunguitos. During his youth, he already served his dues as guitar player in the top tablaos of Madrid. He was also, together with Enrique Heredia, the usual accompanist of one of the great masters of the flamenco cante: the late Enrique Morente.
The group reunited in 2009 for a series of concerts.
MerleFest, the popular American roots music festival founded by influential musician Doc Watson will offer music fans a sneak peek of this spring’s festival with MerleFest on the Road. The festival will present various artists on tour throughout the Southeastern United Sytates during March. The tour will present select artists that will perform at MerleFest 2017 or have performed previously at the festival: Mark Bumgarner, Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys, and Locust Honey.
MerleFest 2017 will take place from April 27-30 on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina.
Thursday, February 23 – Floyd Country Store, Floyd, Virginia.
Friday, February 24 – Gaston County Museum, Dallas, North Carolina
Saturday, February 25 – Willingham Theater, Yadkinville, North Carolina
Sunday, February 26 – Hendershot’s Coffee Bar, Athens, Georgia
Thursday, March 2 – Isis Music Hall, Asheville, North Carolina
Friday, March 3 – Down Home, Johnson City, Tennessee.
Saturday, March 4 – Van Dyke Performance Space, Greensboro, North Carolina
Sunday, March 5 – Motorco, Durham, North Carolina
Tabla performer Shankh Lahiri comes from a family with a strong tradition of Indian Classical Music and has fully devoted his life to this music. Son of the sitarist and Guru Shri Rabindranath Lahiri, he grew up in an environment imbued with the fragrance of Hindustani music.
As a child, Shankh Lahiri received intensive training in both vocal and tabla from his father and went on to graduate with a Sangeet Visharad in both subjects. Currently Shankh, as he is known in the fraternity, is the senior disciple of world-renowned tabla maestro Pandit Nayan Ghosh.
He has accompanied and toured with many reputed and leading artists such as Pt. Jasraj, Ustad Shujaat Khan, Ustad Shahid Parvez, Pt. Arati Ankalikar, Nayan Ghosh (sitar), Pt. Mukul Shivputra, Shri Rakesh Chaurasia and many more.
Aside from his own performing career, Shankh teaches students in Florida through his own organization, Shruti School of Music and the non-profit Shruti Foundation in Tampa.
Powwow step pioneers A Tribe Called Red has released a music video for its single “The Virus.” The videoclip features poet Saul Williams and Canadian drum group Chippewa Travellers. The video includes footage of the Dakota Access Pipeline protests.
The science fiction video is situated in 2047 on “Turtle Island,” a traditional Iroquois earth creation story; where the sky woman fell to a water submerged earth. Animals attempted to rebuild land but the muskrat was the most successful of all; moving dirt from the seabed onto the back of a turtle, re-creating our land.
The video was directed by Tunkasila, produced by DAIS & Mad Ruk, and written by Sol Guy, Ezra Miller and A Tribe Called Red member Bear Witness.
Dec 03 – Winnipeg, MB – The Garrick Centre
Dec 06 – Minneapolis, MN – Skyway Theatre
Dec 07 – Chicago, IL – Lincoln Hall
Dec 08 – London, ON – London Music Hall
Dec 09 -Toronto, ON – REBEL
Dec 14 – Kingston, ON – Stages Night Club
Dec 15 – Montreal, QC – Corona
Dec 16 – Peterborough, ON – The Red Dog
I will be writing a column on Length & Time in music, in each presenting an album and its strategies that pertain to addressing Length & Time.
Vocal music has surpassed instrumental music in popularity despite the advent of electronica music and its subgenres. It’s a sign of deep cultural change, as the change in importance from the cantanta to that of the sonata with the advent of classical music also was.
Brad Mehldau records instrumental music that could be more popular as vocal music: romantic songs, blues, ballads, and even an album named Ode (as in the genre of poetry.) He seems to feel a particular conviction about instrumental music.
He has just released an album with Joshua Redman, Nearness. Featuring songs with titles such as “The Nearness of You,” but also “Old West,” the album seems to explore a theme beyond the grasp of its listener. Redman’s playing and sharp and sober and so is Mehldau’s for all 6 rhythmic and romantic compositions. Like for classical music, the birth of instrumental music’s hegemony, this sort of music is made to be appreciated and deciphered and even patroned as Jazz often is in present day.