Charon Shemekia Copeland was born April 10, 1979 in Harlem, New York City. She is the daughter of famed blues guitarist and vocalist Johnny Copeland
At only 19, Shemekia Copeland released her debut recording, Turn the Heat Up! (1998). A year later, she appeared in the movie Three To Tango, while her song “I Always Get My Man, was featured in the film Broken Hearts Club.
Her second album, Wicked, released in 2000, received three Handy Awards (Song of the Year, Blues Album of the Year, Contemporary Female Artist of the Year) and a GRAMMY nomination. Two years later, New Orleans R&B legend Dr. John stepped in to produce her third recording, Talking To Strangers (2002). Afterwards, Copeland released The Soul Truth in 2005. The album was produced by celebrated Stax guitarist Steve Cropper (who also played on the CD), and featured a mix of blues, funk and Memphis-style soul.
Shemekia Copeland joined Telarc International for the February 2009 release of Never Going Back. This new chapter in the Shemekia Copeland story represents a crossroads on her ongoing artistic journey – a place where numerous new avenues are open to her. While she will always remain loyal to her blues roots, Never Going Back takes a more forward view of the blues, and in so doing points her music and her career in a new direction.
“I’ve had success in my career, and I’m happy with that,” she said. “But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to continue to grow. In order for an artist to grow – and for a genre to grow – you have to do new things. I’m extremely proud to say I’m a blues singer, but that doesn’t mean that’s the only thing I’m capable of singing, or that’s the only style of music I’m capable of making.”
She added: “I want to keep growing. My main goal when I started this was that I was going to do something different with this music, so that this music could evolve and grow. I got that idea from my father. He didn’t do the typical one-four-five blues. He went to Africa and worked with musicians there. He was one of the first blues artists to do that. I want to be the same way. I want to be innovative with the blues.”
Ryland Peter Cooder (Ry Cooder) was born in Los Angeles, California, on March 15, 1947. He is a guitarist well-known for his slide guitar style.
Ry Cooder first attracted attention in the 1960s, playing with bluesman Taj Mahal in The Rising Sons, The Seeds, and Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band.
Cooder played a role in the new appreciation for traditional Cuban music thanks to his collaboration as producer in the Buena Vista Social Club (1997) recording that became a worldwide hit.
German filmmaker Wim Wenders directed a documentary film of the Cuban musicians involved, titled Buena Vista Social Club (1999) that was nominated for an Academy Award in 2000. Cooder also produced Ibrahim Ferrer’s Buenos Hermanos, and Mambo Sinuendo, all Grammy winners.
Ry Cooder’s solo work has been an eclectic mix on american roots music, including dustbowl folk music, tex-mex, soul, gospel, rock and other genrese. He has collaborated with many influential musicians, including the Rolling Stones, Little Feat, the Chieftains, John Lee Hooker, Hawaiian master Gabby Pahinui, and the late Ali Farka Toure. Cooder also formed the Little Village supergroup with Nick Lowe, John Hiatt and Jim Keltner.
Cooder’s 1978 album Bop Till You Drop was the first popular music album to be recorded digitally.
Ry Cooder’s Chávez Ravine, released in 2005 is a tribute to the long-gone Los Angeles Mexican-American enclave known as Chávez Ravine. Using real and imagined historical characters, Cooder and friends created an album that recollects various aspects of the poor but vibrant hillside Chicano community that was razed by developers in the 1950s in the interest of “progress.” The Dodgers Stadium (The Dodgers are a famous American professional baseball team) eventually was built on the spot. Cooder said at the time, “Here is some music for a place you don’t know, up a road you don’t go. Chávez Ravine, where the sidewalk ends.”
Chávez Ravine features various musical genres found in Los Angeles, including conjunto, corrido, R&B, Latin pop, and jazz. The 15-track album is sung in Spanish and English/ Cooder is joined by East Los Angeles legends like Chicano music patriarch Lalo Guerrero, Pachuco boogie king Don Tosti, Thee Midniters front man Little Willie G., and Ersi Arvizu of The Sisters and El Chicano.
“Los Angeles was paved over, malled up, high-rised, and urban-renewed, as fortunes were made, power was concentrated, and everything got faster and bigger,” explained Cooder. “But there is a lot I miss now. The texture of certain older neighborhoods, like Bunker Hill, a rural feel in urban places, like Chávez Ravine and the timbre of life there, and just peace and quiet,” he said.
Chavez Ravine was the first recording of a California trilogy. The second volume was 2007’s My Name Is Buddy.
The last recording of the California trilogy is I, Flathead, an album of music by the fictional musician Kash Buk and his band the Klowns, characters in Cooder’s 95-page tale. The album and novella were released together on June 24, 2008, by Nonesuch / Perro Verde Records.
The novella tells the story of Kash Buk and his friend Shakey the alien, together with various friends, lovers, enemies, and associates in a long-gone California filled with deserts, salt-flat racing, Native Americans, seedy dance halls, amusement parks, and sinister plots. The album includes fourteen songs by Buk, a hard-edged salt flat racer and roadhouse musician. With the story and the music, Cooder creates a world where “strange people are the norm,” inspired by country western music, Popular Mechanics magazines, and science fiction movies.
Flathead reflects change and disruption in a young, post-war, do-it-yourself culture of outsiders obsessed with racing cars fashioned from military surplus parts and flathead engines. As Kash Buk explains, “You got your hard times, your good times, a dog story for you animal lovers, and a forbidden-race love song, which every record ought to have at least one of.”
Cooder produced I, Flathead and wrote or co-wrote all the songs. He sings and plays mandolin, guitar, and bass on the album, alongside Mariachi Los Camperos; Joachim Cooder, and Jim Keltner on drums; Rene Camacho on bass; Francisco Torres on trombone; Ron Blake and Jon Hassell on trumpet; Anthony Gil on bass sax; Flaco Jiménez on accordion, Gil Bernal on tenor sax; Jared Smith on keyboards; Martin Pradler on electric piano and drums; and Juliette Commagere on vocals.
Ry Cooder has composed soundtracks for more than twenty films, including Wim Wenders’ Paris, Texas, and The End of Violence.
Mamadou Kelly – Politiki (Clermont Music CLE 016CD, 2017)
Superb Malian guitarist Mamadou Kelly skillfully combines Saharan desert blues with American blues on Politiki.
In addition to his regular band, BanKaiNa, Mamadou Kelly invited American musicians such as award-winning steel guitar master Cindy Cashdollar, Susie Ibarra on drums, Jake Silver on bass, and Dan Littleton on guitars.
Politiki is a remarkable combination of West African and American blues genres featuring outstanding guitar work.
The leader of the world fusion group Ancient Future, Matthew Montfort, released his first solo recording, ‘Seven Serenades for Scalloped Fretboard Guitar’ in 2009. He is a pioneer among guitarists who have had their fretboards scalloped in order to play various forms of world music that require intricate note-bending ornaments while still being able to play chords.
Montfort immersed himself in an intensive study with veena master K.S. Subramanian in order to fully apply the South Indian gamaka (note-bending) techniques to the guitar. The December 2009 Les Paul issue of Guitar Player Magazine includes a full page feature on Matthew Montfort with a corresponding GuitarPlayer.Com video and lesson entitled “The Music of Jimi Hendrix Applied to Indian Raga.”
He has performed concerts worldwide, from the Festival Internacional de la Guitarra on the golden coast of Spain to the Festival of India in Mumbai. He has worked with many world music legends, including tabla phenomenon Zakir Hussain and Chinese zither master Zhao Hui.
Montfort wrote the book “Ancient Traditions – Future Possibilities: Rhythmic Training Through the Traditions of Africa, Bali, and India,” which has been used by many musicians to improve their rhythm skills.
Knut Reiersrud was born in 1961 in Oslo. He has been a much sought-after guitarist since he was teenager. He started out as a scholar of blues and folk music, and acquired a vast amount of knowledge about older forms of folk music. He became a professional musician in the late 1970s.
At 18, Knut Reiersrud made a sensation locally in Scandinavia when he tried to upstage blues guitarists Buddy Guy and Otis Rush in concert jams when they played Northern Europe. Later he has shared stage with among others Dr. John, Rick Danko (of The Band), Joe Cocker, Jan Garbarek and countless Norwegian jazz and rock settings, such as Silje and Bendik Hofseth (of Steps Ahead). He has also played with Morten Harket (of A-HA).
Reiersrud’s knowledge of Norwegian and international folk music has made him a renowned guitarist and composer. He has toured throughout the world, and has collaborated with musicians from all corners of the globe. His powerful presence and playful exuberance on stage make him a popular performer for all audiences.
Knut Reiersrud is also a renowned record producer, who has worked with numerous blues, folk and world music acts.
* Blå Koral with Iver Kleive (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 106, 1991)
* Himmelskip, with Iver Kleive (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 163, 1994)
* The sweet sunny north vol 1, with Kaiser/Lindley (Shanachie SH 64057, 1994)
* The sweet sunny north vol 2, with Kaiser/Lindley (Shanachie SH 64061, 1996)
* IX, with Bendik Hofseth ( Sony/Columbia 468 400 2, 1991)
* Amuse yourself, with Bendik Hofseth (Sony/Columbia 472 988 2, 1993)
* Tramp (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 129, 1993)
* Klapp (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 151, 1995)
* Soul of a man (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 194, 1998)
* Sub (Kirkelig Kulturverksted FXCD 215, 1999)
* Den signede dag, with Iver Kleive (Kirkelig Kulturverksted, 2000)
* Sweet Showers of Rain (Kirkelig Kulturverksted, 2001)
* Pretty Ugly (Kirkelig Kulturverksted, 2004)
* Gitar (Big Dipper Records, 2009)
* One Drop Is Plenty, with Mighty Sam McClain (2011)
* Aftonblues (Bluestown Records, 2013)
* Tears Of The World, with Mighty Sam McClain (ACT Music, 2015)
Julio A. Santillán is a composer and guitarist originally from Tucuman, Argentina. His compositions combine elements from his home land folk music, jazz improvisation and classical music.
He has studied classical guitar at Instituto Superior de Musica (Argentina) under the direction of maestro Pablo Gonzalez Jasey. He graduated summa cum laude with a dual major in Classical Composition and Contemporary Writing and Production from Berklee College of Music (Boston, USA). He also studied jazz improvisation with Mick Goodrick.
Santillan received the 2004 Van Lier Fellowship, ASACPlus Award, Louis Armstrong Jazz Award, the Arif Mardin Award and the Contemporary Writing and Production Achievement Award.
As a composer/arranger he has produced music for documentary films, theater, recordings and live performances for artists around the world. Recently, Argentine virtuoso guitarist Victor Villadangos, has included guitar studies from Julio’s Book Cinco Estudios Criollos in his latest CD Guitar Music from Argentina vol. II (Naxos).
Julio also produced Colombian singer Marta Gomez’s Cantos de Agua Dulce, Entre Cada Palabra (Chesky Records) and La Ronda- Women of Latin America, Paula Ausente- Women of the World (Putumayo Records).
He has recorded and performed with many musicians from Argentina, Boston and New York including Oscar Stagnaro (Paquito D’Rivera), Livingston Taylor, Raul Carnota and Sandra Mihanovich.
Santillan has shared the stage with important artists such as Mercedes Sosa, John Mayer, Pablo Ziegler (Astor Piazzolla), Paquito D’Rivera, Bonnie Raitt, Tania Libertad, Diana Krall and Leon Gieco. He has performed and gave workshops in Argentina, Colombia, Finland, Greece, Canada and in more than fifty cities in the U.S. including New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Miami, Dallas and Washington D.C.
Julio A. Santillan has recorded over 30 CDs, including a play-along CD for The Latin Bass Book (Sher Music, by Oscar Stagnaro), two albums with the Pablo Ablanedo Octet (Freshsound records), four cds with Marta Gomez (BigSur records /Chesky Records)- one of which was chosen among the best 10 records of 2003 by the Boston Globe- and one by tango diva Katie Viqueira (Freshsound records)- Independent Music Award winner, 2005 best World Music Album.
Santillan led for almost 10 years Los Changos (trio & septet); an ensemble that performed his own compositions. The group has been featured in some of the most prestigious venues in the U.S. such as Blue Note (New York) and Regattabar (Boston).
Los Changos toured South America in four opportunities. At the moment Julio is working with a brand new project: the Julio Santillan Trio. He has released four cds with his compositions: Desde el Norte, Anit Negra, Nann and El Bosque de la Memoria (BigSur Records- CAP Records).
He was a faculty member at Manhattan College 2004-2009. Later he moved to Spain where he worked at a music school until 2012. He’s currently the director of the Orquesta-Escuela de Chascomús in buenos Aires.
Desde el Norte (Big Sur Records, 2001) Anit Negra (Big Sur Records, 2003)
Nann (Big Sur Records, 2005) El Bosque de la Memoria (Big Sur Records, 2008)
Argentinian Jazz in New York (Big Sur Records, 2009)
Un instante (Big Sur Records, 2011) Meia laranja (Big Sur Records, 2012)
Va place tango? (Big Sur Records, 2015)
Cinco Estudios Criollos, a book with five studies for guitar based on Argentine folk rhythms (chacarera, milonga, cueca, guarania and malambo).
Jose Antonio Rodríguez was born in Córdoba on March 28th, 1964. In 1981 he won the First Prize for Flamenco Guitar Concert, at the XXI Festival de Cante de las Minas de la Unión.
In 1982 Rodriguez won First Prize for Flamenco Guitar Concert at the XI National Contest of Flamenco Guitar in Jerez de la Frontera.
In 1984 he obtained the Official title of Flamenco Guitar teacher at the High Conservatory of Music in Córdoba. At the age of 20, he was the youngest guitar teacher of flamenco.
1986 – National Prize “Ramón Montoya” for Flamenco Guitar Concert at the XI National Contest of Flamenco Art in Córdoba. The same year he was elected member of Fundación Societat i Cultura “Live Music now” as a guitar player. His premiere in Madrid, at Centro Cultural de la Villa, was a great success, where many influenwriters, musciians and actors were present.
1987 – Premiere of his work “Guajira Para Guitarra Flamenca y Orquesta” within the extraordinary concerts on the occasion of “Andalucía Day”.
1988 – Intensive period of concerts in Europe and America. That same year he composed the music for the work “Tiempo De Amor y Muerte” for its premiere in Sevilla, with choreography of Mario Maya. He has two solo CDs interpreting his own compositions, “Calahorra” and “Callejon De Las Flores”. Some of his compositions are included in CDs released in Europe, such as his “Valls Flamenco” released by Ex Libris Digital Recording.
1990 – Premiere of his ambitious concert for flamenco guitar “Viento De Libertad”, that featured orchestral arrangements by Joan Albert Amargós.
1992 – The Bienal de Arte Flamenco “Ciudad de Sevilla” asked him to arrange the composition, orchestration and musical management of the show “Tango”. He took part in the recording of “Sevilla Es Asi” for the inauguration of EXPO 92 in Sevilla.
1993 – He took part in the soundtrack of the film “La Lola Se Va A Los Puertos”, starring Rocío Jurado.
1994 – He composed “Requiem”, together with Joan Albert Amargós and choreography by Mario Maya, for the world premiere of the Compañía Andaluza De Danza. He also participated in the performance of the show “A Oscuras” together with Enrique Morente and Esperanza Fernández.
1995 – He toured with the Cultural Series “Conocer el Flamenco” along with Manolo Sanlúcar.
He took part in the “Flamenco” film by Carlos Saura. He also participated in the new mixing of the recording “Nochebuena Gitana” accompanying Camarón and Paco de Lucía.
He composed the original music of the work “Retratos En La Memoria” with choreography of Ramón Oller, whose premiere was at the Festival Internacional de Danza in Sevilla.
1996 – Premiere of the new orchestration of “Viento De Libertad” conducted by Joan Albert Amargós.
1997 – He composed the work “El Jaleo” by request of Centro Andaluz De Danza with choreography by María Pages and Fernando Romero.
1998 – Premiere of his recording work “Manhattan De La Frontera” at Bienal De Arte Flamenco De Sevilla.
In 2016 he released an independently produced album titled Adiós Muchachos (2016). It features many guests, including one track where he invited some of the finest guitarists in Spain.
John Doyle is one of the most talented and innovative musicians to come out of Ireland in recent years. Now a resident of Asheville (North Carolina), John Doyle was born in 1971 in Dublin, Ireland, into an extended family of musicians and singers. He was playing professionally by the age of 16 when he and singer Susan McKeown joined to form The Chanting House, which later added the prodigious talents of Seamus Egan and Eileen Ivers to the group.
A few years later, John and Egan came together with John Williams, the wonderfully inventive accordion player from Chicago, talented fiddler Winifred Horan, and Waterford-born singer Karan Casey, to form the enormously influential band, Solas.
John’s powerful guitar playing provided the signature rhythmic backbone for the band, and his delicate and emotional finger-style playing and creative vocal harmonies can be heard on all Solas’ recordings for Shanachie Records. Solas performed to sold-out audiences around the world, appeared on NBC’s The Today Show, public radio’s A Prairie Home Companion, Mountain Stage, E-Town and World Cafe, and received three NAIRD awards and a Grammy nomination.
John composed music for the film Uncle Robert’s Footsteps and the play Down the Flats, and appears on the soundtracks for The Brothers McMullen, Soldier and PBS’s Out of Ireland. He has performed at scores of major festivals worldwide, including the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Rocky Mountain Folks Fest, Washington Irish Festival, Milwaukee Irish Festival and major festivals in Denmark, Belgium, Brittany, England, Spain, Switzerland, Austria, Finland and Ireland.
John is also a highly sought-after sideman and has recorded and/or toured with Liz Carroll, Eileen Ivers, Tim O’Brien and The Crossing, Frank McCourt, Linda Thompson, Kate Rusby, Mick Moloney, John Williams, Seamus Egan, Cathal McConnell, Kim Robertson, Brian Conway, Joannie Madden, James Keane, Joe McKenna, Karan Casey, Cathie Ryan and James Leva.
John’s much anticipated first solo recording, Evening Comes Early, was released on Shanachie Records in 2001, and his second solo CD Wayward Son was released in 2004 on Compass Records.
Gerardo Núñez is considered one of the best guitarists of all genres in the world today. He is comfortable playing deeply emotional traditional Flamenco at an amazing speed, but he can also venture into jazz, Latin music, and other genres with ease.
Gerardo Núñez was born in 1961. He grew up in Jerez de la Frontera, in southern Spain, listening to Flamenco and also to American rock and jazz. At an early age, he took guitar lessons from Rafael Aguilar. At fourteen, he was a skilled player and accompanied well-known Flamenco singers like Tío Gregorio El Borrico, Terremoto de Jerez, José el de la Tomasa and Manuel Mairena.
Gerardo studied at the Cátedra de Flamencología (Flamencology School) in Jerez de la Frontera, the only music school in Spain with a department exclusively dedicated to teaching Flamenco music. Later, he moved to Madrid, where he worked with various professional Flamenco dance companies, including the famous Mario Maya Dance Company, where he met world class dancer Carmen Cortés, who later became his wife. In 1981, Gerardo toured Japan together with fellow guitarist Paco Cepero.
Settled in Madrid, Gerardo began to experiment with top jazz musicians like pianist Tomás San Miguel and Nuevo Flamenco saxophone player and flautist Jorge Pardo. Gerardo also participated in the annual Flamenco Summit several times and has performed as a solo artist and with his band in New York City, Tokyo, Paris, Zurich, Sao Paulo, Dublin and many other cities.
Gerardo Núñez has recorded as a guest with pop stars like Julio Iglesias, Mecano and Rosario and other world class artists such as Radio Tarifa, Danilo Pérez, John Patitucci, Michael Brecker, and Andreas Vollenweider.
In 1998, American world music label Alula Records released an album produced and recorded in New York City, titled Calima. The album featured renowned jazz and world music musicians, such as pianist Danilo Perez, percussionist Arto Tuncobeciyan and bassist John Patitucci.
In 2002 he won the Giraldilla award for best flamenco guitarist at the Bienal de Flamenco.
In recent years, Gerardo has been nurturing new guitarists. In 2003 he produced the album La nueva escuela de la guitarra flamenca (The new school of flamenco guitar), which features José Manuel León Delgado, Antón Jiménez, Juan Antonio Suárez, Jesús de Rosario, Vicente Cortés and Gerardo Nuñez himself.
In 2016, Gerardo recorded an album with Swedish guitarist Ulf Wakenius.
Gerardo lives in Madrid during winter and spends summers in southern Spain, taking care of his vineyard and teaching guitar workshops in Sanlucar de Barrameda.
* El Gallo Azul (Flamencos Accidentales, GASA, 1987)
* Flamencos en Nueva York (Spain: GASA/Europe and USA: Verabra Records, 1989). Reissued as Flamencos en Nueva York (DRO East West, 1989). Midline CD compilation featuring tracks from El Gallo Azul and Flamencos en Nueva York.
* Jucal (El Gallo Azul, 1994)
* Jucal (Alula Records, 1997). Longer American version, featuring additional 15 minutes of music.
* Salomé (Art-Danza, 1998). Soundtrack from the ‘Salomé’ dance show.
* Calima (Alula Records, 1998)
* Jazzpaña II (Act 9284-2, 2000)
* Cruce de Caminos, with Perico Sambeat (Resistencia RESCD 115, 2001)
* Andando el tiempo (2004)
* Travesia (ACT Music, 2012)
* Logos, with Ulf Wakenius (ACT Music, 2016)
* Flamenco. El Arte de Gerardo Núñez. Vol. I (Flamenco. The Art of Gerardo Nuñez. Vol. 1), 2002
* La técnica al servicio del arte. Vol. II (Technique at the service of art. Vol. II), 2002
Fierro Chifle included Juan Manuel Sanchez, Gabriel Santamaria and Pablo Vernieri. The trio was formed in Buenos Aires (Argentina) at the beginning of 2004. The tango guitar ensemble’s idea was to reconstruct the different periods of tango, including traditional as well as contemporary expressions. Sebastian Piana, Agustin Bardi, Anibal Troilo, Roberto Grela, Homero Exposito, Julian Plaza, Horacio Salgun and Astor Piazzolla, among others, are at the turning point of a musical and aesthetic search developed through a traditional sound.
The repertoire included tango classics adapted to dance rooms as wells as concert rooms. In addition, various genres such as Tango, Waltz and Milonga were incorporated and interlaced in a dynamic show.
Fierro Chifle is an idiomatic expression which means “to drive misfortune away”
Juan Manuel Sanchez graduated from Music School of Avellaneda, Buenos Aires. Pablo Vernieri and Gabriel Santamaria graduated from music conservatory of Morin, Buenos Aires.
They were all professional musicians and teachers in Buenos Aires.
Fierro Chifle (2006)
Your Connection to traditional and contemporary World Music