All posts by Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several TV 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 albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.

Book on History of Rock Music in Cuba Soon at Local Book Stores

John Lennon in Havana with a little help from my friends
John Lennon in Havana with a little help from my friends
(Prensa Latina – Cumbancha) Havana, Cuba – The book John Lennon in Havana with a little help from my friends, by Cuban writer and music investigator Ernesto Juan Castellanos, deals with the history of rock on the Island. According to Radio Rebelde, the volume collects interviews with personalities of Cuban culture, among them singer and songwriter Silvio Rodríguez, writer Miguel Barnet, musicians Juan Formell and Leo Brouwer, as well as the Vicar General of Havana, Monsignor Carlos Manuel de Céspedes.

Castellanos, who studies the work of the famous quartet of Liverpool, has three other books: Los Beatles en Cuba (1998) [The Beatles in Cuba], El sargento Pimienta vino a Cuba en un submarino amarillo (2000) [Sergeant Pepper came to Cuba in his Yellow Submarine] and La guerra se acaba si tú quieres (2001) [The War Ends if You Wish].

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Salsa Around the World

Various Artists - Salsa Around the World
Various Artists – Salsa Around the World
New York, USA- The latest Putumayo compilation is Salsa Around the World. It is a unique collection of salsa tracks from unexpected places. The intoxicating rhythms and joyful melodies of Spanish American salsa have traveled the globe, earning new followers and influencing artists from Haiti to Helsinki. Over the years, Latin music has become part of the fabric of mainstream music, its influences turning up in jazz, rock and pop. As this collection demonstrates, it has infiltrated the world’s music as well. On Salsa Around the World one can hear salsa-influenced music sung in Greek, Arabic, Hindi, Papiamento, Wolof, Douala, and Haitian Creole. Typical Cuban instruments such as congas, bongos and timbales are played alongside pennywhistles and panpipes.

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4th International Conference on Music Information Retrieval

Baltimore, Maryland, USA – The 4th International Conference on Music Information Retrieval will be held October 26-30, 2003, in Baltimore, Maryland (USA).

Registration for ISMIR 2003 is now available online through the ISMIR 2003 web site (see above). Other conference information is also available from this site, which will be updated periodically.
(Accomodation information to be available shortly from the same site.) The majority of sessions will take place in Baltimore, with someevents held at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Register
early and take advantage of the discounted early registration fees.

The annual ISMIR Conference is the first established international forum for those involved in work on accessing digital musical materials. It reflects the tremendous growth of music-related data
available either locally or remotely through networks and the consequent need to search this content and retrieve music and musical information efficiently and effectively.

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World Music at Lugano Estival Jazz, Switzerland

Miriam Makeba
Miriam Makeba
Lugano, Switzerland – The annual Lugano Estival Jazz Festival will feature world music acts, including Miriam Makeba (South Africa), Omar Sosa (Cuba), Mory Kante, Edie Palmieri, Kassav, and Daniela Mercury (Brazil). The rest of the line up includes Manhattan Transfer, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, and Jimmy Cliff.

The 25th edition takes place in two different venues: July 4 in Mendrisio (Piazzale alla Valle), July 5 in Mendrisio (Piazzale alla Valle), July 10 in Lugano (Piazza della Riforma), July 11 in Lugano (Piazza della Riforma) and July 12 in Lugano (Piazza della Riforma). Concerts begin each evening at 8.30 pm. Lugano Estival Jazz is the premier musical event in Southern Switzerland (Canton Ticino).
Lugano Estival Jazz is promoted by local music loving citizens and funded with private and some public money. All concerts are open air and free.

For more information, go to the Lugano Estival Jazz Web site.

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Celebrate Toronto Street Festival

Toronto, Canada – The Celebrate Toronto Street Festival transforms five major intersections along the world’s longest street, Yonge Street, into a world-class, free one-of-a-kind festival. Scheduled for July 4 – 6, 2003, the multi award-winning Celebrate Toronto Street Festival honors the city’s rich culture and diversity with spectacular performances by local, national and international artists. The festival draws more than one million revellers each year. It is the only celebration of its kind with over 500,000 square feet of entertainment, 12 stages, more than 1200 performers and 750 things to see and do. This festival is one of the hottest gatherings of talent in the nation with non-stop concerts, dance, daring thrill and spectacle shows, children’s entertainment and much more.

The sites for 2003 are:
Celebrate Downtown @ Dundas
Audiences can celebrate the energy of Toronto’s vibrant downtown core – including Yonge Dundas Square – with thrill shows, extreme sports and non-stop new and classic rock concerts.

Celebrate the World @ Bloor
With one stage featuring traditional world music and dance, and another dedicated to Toronto’s urban music scene, the main intersection on the longest street in the world celebrates the diversity that is the heart and soul of this city.

Celebrate the Arts @ St. Clair
This festival site showcases Toronto’s rich arts and cultural-entertainment scene featuring jazz, big band, opera and orchestral concerts along with street theatre, dance and visual arts.

Celebrate Central @ Eglinton
Home to Friday night’s opening ceremonies, the largest site of the festival features great big entertainment for all tastes and ages with an eclectic mix of music – roots, rock and pop – breathtaking spectacle, interactive sports and the glitz of a giant midway.

Celebrate Kids @ Lawrence
This north end site is the perfect family destination featuring the best in children’s performers including music, dance, theatre, fantastic family attractions, make-and-take crafts, a giant inflatable playground and so much more.

The 2003 Celebrate Toronto Street Festival also marks the launch of Summerlicious. Modelled after the hugely successful Winterlicious, Toronto’s first annual restaurant week, this summer program will run from July 4 – 10, 2003. Each of the 50 participating restaurants will offer a special three-course prix fixe menu where patrons can sample the establishment’s tasty fare. The menus are available at lunch and dinner and have one of two price categories: $10 for lunch and $20 for dinner or $20 for lunch and $30 for dinner (some restrictions may apply).

Celebrate Toronto Street Festival begins on Friday, July 4 at 8 p.m. at the intersection of Yonge and Eglinton with the incredible opening ceremonies setting the stage for a full weekend of fantastic music, vibrant dance, breathtaking thrill shows and more. The festival continues throughout the weekend at all five festival sites, open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday, July 5 and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, July 6 (Yonge and Lawrence gets started at 10 a.m.).

Tourists to Toronto can contact the Tourism Toronto call centre at 1-877-342-0243 for more information on this and other events in the city.

Admission to the Celebrate Toronto Street Festival is FREE and getting there couldn’t be easier. All five festival sites are accessible via the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). Festival subway stops on the Yonge line are Dundas, Bloor, St. Clair, Eglinton and Lawrence stations.

For more information on the Celebrate Toronto Street Festival and other events produced by Toronto Special Events, call Access Toronto at 416-338-0338 or visit www.toronto.ca/special_events.

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Oscar D’León Recuperating After Heart Attacks

Oscar D'Leon
Oscar D’Leon
Los Angeles, CA, USA – According to booking agency SalsaArtists.com, last week, on Friday, Venezuelan salsa legend Oscar D’León suffered 3 heart attacks while performing in the Caribbean Island of Martinique. Medical tests discovered that he had 3 heart attacks, 1 on the stage while performing and 2 more in the hospital. The diagnosis of the heart attacks were due to high cholesterol and he will have to control his diet in the future. After speaking with Oscar D’León’s management office in Miami SalsaArtists was informed that Oscar is currently in stable condition. He is currently back home in Caracas, Venezuela.

Oscar, who will celebrate his 60th birthday on July 11th, is already feeling great and wants to continue with his touring schedule but according to doctor’s orders he is required to take a short rest period. Within 2 weeks he will continue with his tour to Europe for 1 month.

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Mali Lolo! Stars of Mali

Mali Lolo!  Stars of Mali
Mali Lolo! Stars of Mali
Washington, D.C., USA – This year’s Smithsonian Folklife festival will be dedicated to Mali. To celebrate the event, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings has released a compilation of music from Mali.

Mali Lolo! Stars of Mali (Smithsonian Folkways 40508) showcases the preeminent musicians on the forefront of Mali’s modern musical renaissance. It features the Super Rail Band – Mali’s headliner group for 30 years – Grammy winner Ali Farka Toure, kora masters Toumani Diabate and Ballake Sissoko, Wassulu diva Oumou Sangare, guitarist and singer Habib Koite with his Bamada group, and more of Mali’s best talent.

This collection exemplifies each artist’s exploration of the rich ground between revered musical traditions and the innovations of modern Mali that draw upon a myriad of Western influences. Modern Mali, a powerhouse of African musical tradition, reverberates far beyond its geographic boundaries, harnessing its rich culture and history to create unique contemporary sounds.

Track listing:

1. Kasse Mady Diabate “Eh Ya Ye” 4:20
2. Kandia Kouyate “San Barana” 6:19
3. Habib Koite and Bamada “Nimato” 4:05

4. Ko Kan Ko Sata Doumbia “Ko Kan Ko Sata Doumbia On River” 1:03

5. Yoro Sidibe “Noumou Koulouba” 5:55
6. Oumou Sangare “Ya La” 4:07
7. Toumani Diabate and Ballake Sissoko “Cheikhna Demba” 4:26
8. Abdoulaye Diabate and Super Manden “Fakoli” 6:03
9. Tinariwen “Tessalit” 3:56

10. Tartit “Iya Heniya” 3:35
11. Lobi Traore “Duga” 5:23
12. Ali Farka Toure with Afel Bocoum “Hilly Yoro” 3:36
13. Neba Solo “Vaccination” 3:18
14. Rokia Traore “Yere Uolo” 4:12
15. Les Escrocs “Pirates” 4:50
16. Super Rail Band “Mansa” 6:31

Buy Mali Lolo! Stars of Mali

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Susheela Raman’s Love Trap

Susheela Raman - Love Trap
Susheela Raman – Love Trap

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA – Love Trap (Narada World) is the new album by Anglo-Indian singer Susheela Raman.

The recording features Indian music woven with Western cultures as well as European, African and Asian musical stylings.

Joining Raman on Love Trap are such familiar musical powerhouses as Sam Mills and Tony Allen among others. Susheela was born in London in 1973, to a Tamil family. From her childhood, she studied traditional Southern Indian music as taught by her parents. She grew up between two musical cultures: western and Indian.

In 1998, Susheela started to work with Joi, pioneers of “Asian breakbeat fusionist” music and featured on their album One and One Is One (RealWorld). The group won the BBC Asia Music Award in 1999.

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Noche Flamenca in the San Francisco Bay Area

Noche Flamenca
Noche Flamenca

Berkeley, California, USA – One of the world’s foremost flamenco companies and a sensation in its 2000 Bay Area debut, Noche Flamenca takes the stage at Cal Performances’ Zellerbach Playhouse for a two-week run of eleven performances beginning at 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, June 24 and running through Sunday, July 6, 2003. Noche Flamenca’s appearance is part of Celebración de las Culturas de Iberoamérica, Cal Performances’ programming initiative to bring the performing arts of Spanish and Portuguese America, Spain and the Caribbean to San Francisco Bay Area audiences. Noche Flamenca captures the essence, the purity of form and emotional fire that has made the company one of Spain’s most successful ensembles. Founded by Artistic Director Martin Santangelo and leading dancer Soledad Barrio in 1993, the Madrid-based ensemble has quickly become one of the most sought after dance companies in the world.

The uniqueness of Noche Flamenca emanates from the combination of extraordinary guitarists, singers and dancers who perform together with a communal spirit and a profound understanding of flamenco. Their talents are interwoven and given equal weight, in an artistic vision developed by the founders. The performers offer dance works of deep dramatic substance and top-rank virtuosity that reveal the true heart and soul of flamenco. In its international touring, the ensemble has visited Egypt, Australia the United States and Canada, with followers who described the company as “brilliant” and “the real thing.” These performances are part of a summer tour that also includes dates at the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra in Los Angeles, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, the Florida International Festival, An Appalachian Summer Festival, and a two-week debut tour of Argentina.

Performances in Berkeley will feature dancers Soledad Barrio, Isabel Bayón and Antonio Jiménez “El Chupete;” guitarists Jesús Torres and Paco Cruz; and singers Manuel Gago and Antonio Vizarraga. The Berkeley performances are presented by Cal Performances in association with Aaron Concert Artists of New York.

Martin Santangelo, co-founder of Noche Flamenca, is a resident of Madrid. A student of Ciro, Paco Romero, el Guito, Manolete and Alejandro Granados, he has performed throughout Spain and the U.S. with Maria Benítez’s Teatro Flamenco, at the Lincoln Center Festival of the Arts and with Paco Romero’s Ballet Español. He also appeared in and choreographed a solo for Julie Taymor’s Juan Darien at Lincoln Center. Santangelo choreographed Romeo and Juliette at the Denver Theater Center and co-directed and choreographed Bodas de Sangre with Larry Kornfield at SUNY Purchase. Santangelo, who was born and raised in New York’s Greenwich Village, was exposed to dance by his Argentine mother, a dancer with Alwin Nikolais. As a young man, he studied acting at New York University and moved to San Francisco, joining El Teatro Campesino. While with the theater company he happened to fill in for an actor in a flamenco performance and was transfixed. He soon left the U.S. for Madrid, to pursue flamenco studies there.

The co-founder of Noche Flamenca, Soledad Barrio was born in Madrid and trained in flamenco and Clásico Español. Barrio has appeared as soloist with the Ballet Español of Paco Romero, Manuela Vargas, Blanca del Rey, Luisillo, El Guito, Manolete, Cristobal Reyes, and Toleo. In 2001 Barrio was named the winner of a New York Dance & Performance Award (a.k.a. the “BESSIES”) for Outstanding Creative Achievement. She is married to Artistic Director Martin Santangelo, and they have two daughters, Gabriela and Stella.

Tickets for Noche Flamenca June 24 – July 6 in Zellerbach Playhouse are priced at $42.00, with a limited number of $30.00 obstructed view seats available as well. Tickets are available through the Cal Performances Ticket Office at Zellerbach Hall; at (510) 642-9988 to charge by phone; at www.calperfs.berkeley.edu; and at the door. Half-price tickets are available for purchase by UC Berkeley students. UC faculty and staff, senior citizens and other students receive a $2 discount. The Ticket Office will be closed weekends beginning June through August 2003. For more information, call Cal Performances at (510) 642-9988, or visit the Cal Performances web site at www.calperfs.berkeley.edu.

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Cartagena Caribe: Major Caribbean Festival in Colombia

Cartagena de Indias, Colombia – Cartagena de Indias, the Colombian city located in the South American country’s Caribbean coast, will host a new festival called Cartagena Caribe.

It’s a large even featuring top Latin, Caribbean and African musicians from Jamaica, Congo, Colombia, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic: Diblo, Shaggy, Champeta All Stars, Latin Fresh, Latin Dreams, Toto La Momposina, Calamari Big Band, Alfredo De La Fe, Eddy Herrera, Diblo Dibala, Jorge Oñate, Tabú Latino.The concerts will take during the day, late evening and throughout the night, June 28-29, at the Plaza de toros de Cartagena de Indias (bullfighting ring).

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