World Music Network/Rough Guides Contribution to Tsunami Relief

San Francisco, California, USA – In the month of January, with
any online purchase of any of the following Rough Guides: the Rough Guide to
the Music of Thailand
, the Rough Guide to the Music of Indonesia, the
Rough Guide to the Music of India and the Rough Guide to the Music of
the Indian Ocean
,
World Music Network

(UK) will donate £5.00 (about $9.00) from the sale to the Oxfam Tsunami Crisis
Fund.

Oxfam is working to provide water,
sanitation, food, shelter and other essential relief items in India, Sri Lanka,
Indonesia, and elsewhere.The Rough Guides series is a collection of high quality CD compilations that
focus on specific countries or regions of the world.

To purchase Tsunami area CDs online from World Music Network/Rough Guides,
click here.

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Antonio Pitingo Kicks Off the Concerts Scheduled as Part of Flamenco 2005!

Chicago, Illinois, USA –
The Instituto Cervantes de Chicago in collaboration with the Chicago Department
of Cultural Affairs presents Antonio Pitingo in the first night of concerts
scheduled as part of Flamenco 2005! Thursday, Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. under the grand
Tiffany dome in Preston Bradley Hall of the historic Chicago Cultural Center, 78
E. Washington St.

Pitingo made his international debut with guitarist

Gerardo Núñez
at the Chicago Cultural Center in Feb. 2004 as part of the flamenco
festival. For his return performance, he will be accompanied by guitarist Luis
Miguel Valle Manzano and dancer Fernando Soto Valencia. Admission is free.Antonio Pitingo was born in 1980 in Huelva, a city in Spain’s southern Andalusia
region. His love for flamenco comes from his family and friends, all of whom are
from Cádiz and Huelva. He sang as a child, but at age 14, began to take flamenco
cante seriously, with his favorite forms being Fandango, Malagueña, Granaina,
Solea and Bulería. Among his favorite male flamenco singers (cantaores) are
Caracol, Tomás Pavón, El Carbonerillo, El Sevillano,

Camarón de la Isla
, and

Enrique Morente
. It has only been a year since he has started to sing
professionally, yet his voice has a very old echo that comes from deep within
him. He also has a tremendous affinity for old flamenco songs (cantes). He goes
to the roots of the cantes, modifies and adapts them to his own voice, thereby
transforming them into something more personal. His love for the cante of the
golden years and the privilege of having a mind that truly understands the soul
of flamenco music make him one of the genre’s current stars.

The Chicago Cultural Center will also host a concert with Arcángel Wednesday,
Feb. 9 as part of Flamenco 2005! that runs Jan. 12 – Feb. 14. The festival
features a mix of free and ticketed events including live performances from
Spain’s most current and popular stars in flamenco dance and music as well as
lectures and cutting-edge flamenco films. Presented by the Instituto Cervantes
de Chicago in collaboration with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs,
participating venues include the Chicago Cultural Center, the Athenaeum,
HotHouse/CIPEX, Old Town School of Folk Music, the Chicago Symphony Center, the
Gene Siskel Film Center, and the Flamenco Arts Center.

For tickets or information about Flamenco 2005! contact The Instituto Cervantes
de Chicago at 312-335-1996 or visit www.cervantes1.org.

For information on the admission free concert with Antonio Pitingo & Special
Guests, call 312-744-6630 or visit
www.chicagoculturalcenter.org.

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Trio Trovarroco to Perform in Germany and Austria

(Prensa Latina)
Villa Clara, Cuba.- The Trio Trovarroco, joined by tres player Maikel Elizarde and
bassist Cesar Bacaro, opened the year with a European tour along outstanding
artists, including Pio Leyva, pianist Guillermo Rubalcaba, and singers Julio
Fernandez and Maria Victoria Iznaga.

The Germany tour will close January 13, to follow up with the visit to Austria,
their spokesman Rachid Lopez stated. He also said that the trio will play solo
shows in both countries.Only a few years after it was founded, Trovarroco shows excellent references for
their work fusing the classical and the popular music, emphasizing in Cuban
Trova. Its original format and its three talented musicians allow them to create
real musical jewels, harmonically complex.

During September, the trio accompanied Cuban folk singer Silvio Rodriguez on his
Spain tour.

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Cubans Celebrate the 46th Anniversary of their Revolution

(Prensa Latina)
Havana, Cuba – Spontaneity and lack of inhibition were two key elements clearly
visible in the popular balls the Cubans organized to celebrate the opening of
2005 and the 46th anniversary of the victory of their Revolution.

Cuba strengthened as a musical island with the best representatives of son,
rumba, bolero and timba, in a gigantic show taking place at the main squares of
the country.

The traditional cannon shot at 9 pm, during the colony times a signal to
announce the city walls were closing, transmuted its meaning to open the New
Year celebrations, releasing the positive energy of songs and rhythms defying
the surprising rainy clouds arriving.In Old Havana’s Amphitheater, the legendary Septeto Habanero made the families
gathered there dance to the exhaustion and awakened the admiration of a group of
tourists, ‘infected’ by the virus of raucous joy of those who intoned old
immortal melodies.

Meanwhile, at the Antimperialist Tribune facing the US Interest Section, the
youth drained the night out of music until the wee small hours with a
mega-concert by Buena Fe, David Blanco,
Los
Van Van
and La Charanga Habanera,
including other popular bands.

The main coliseums in Havana also opened for a program including the dancers of
the famous Tropicana cabaret, at the National Theater; the Boleros de Oro
(Golden Boleros), at the Mella Theater; and the revival of the play “Tibor
Galarraga,” in El Sotano Hall.

Summing up, January 1st was a day brimming over with the love Cubans feel for
the best of their popular culture.

[Photo; los Van Van].

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Fifty-two Relevant Musicians Decorated in Cuba

(Prensa Latina)
Havana, Cuba – Composer Marta Valdes and percussionist Federico Aristides Soto, better known as Tata Guines, led the list of 52 relevant musicians decorated December 30 with the highest cultural distinctions of the Cuban State.

In a ceremony at the José Martí Memorial Center at the Revolution Square, the honored artists received the medals Felix Varela, Alejo Carpentier and the National Culture Distinction.Leonardo Acosta, Federico Arístides Soto, Manuel Duchesne Cuzan, Vicente Feliu, Maria Antonieta Enriquez, Noel Nicola, Jesus Ortega, Maria Felicia Perez, Ñico Rojas, Marta Valdes, Jose Maria Vitier, Sergio Vitier and Lázaro Ros got the Order Felix Varela.

Carlos Alfonso, Joaquin Betancourt, Bobby Carcasses, Ela Calvo, Juan Manuel Ceruto, Santiago Feliu, Ulises Hernandez, Inocente Iznaga (El Jilguero de Cienfuegos), Hernán Lopez-Nussa and Jose Antonio Mendez were granted the medal Alejo Carpentier.

The list is completed with Teresita Junco, German Ibañez, Adriano Rodriguez and Luis Mirabal, better known as Guajiro Mirabal, Buena Vista Social Club member.

The National Culture Distinction went to the hands of Georgia Aguirre, Enrique Alvarez, Moises Valle, Giraldo Piloto, Manolito Simonet, Mayito Rivera, Cesar “Puppy” Pedroso, Maria Elena Mendiola, Rene Baños and Amadito Valdes (Buena Vista Social Club).

The list also includes Caridad Diez, Jose Reyes, Miriam Escudero, Laura Vilar, Maria del Carmen Prieto, Jesus Rodriguez, Gilberto Morales, Pablo Menendez, Amado de Deu, Teresa Garcia Caturla, Xiomara Valdes, Roberto Sanchez, Emilio Heredia and Pedrito Calvo.

Culture Vice-Minister Abel Acosta summarized the resolutions granting the different decorations with these words: “You are the stars of an admirable career in which art has been, simultaneously, shield and sword.”These medals pay tribute to the merit, devotion and defense of the national identity by the artists decorated, Acosta added.

On behalf of the musicians, composer Marta Valdes expressed how proud they were on the print they have been leaving in Cuban culture, also stated each work they have done means Cuba. While receiving the decoration, she stressed: “We are seeing the perfect tuning for the Homeland to look at us with pride.”

The ceremony was attended by Esteban Lazo, member of the Communist Party´s Politburo; Culture Minister Abel Prieto, Vice-Ministers, officials, musicians and artists, including singer and Parliament member Silvio Rodriguez.

[Photo; Lázaro Ros].

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First UK Tour by Tibetan Refugee Children from India

UK –
Tibet Foundation is hosting a 21-day UK Cultural Tour by a group of
eleven Tibetan refugee children, with two teachers from the Tibetan
Homes Foundation (THF) in India from 24 January – 13 February 2005.

This is an historic first. The young Tibetans, aged 13 – 15, will
visit schools, art centers, theatres and the Royal Opera House.
They will showcase traditional Tibetan songs and dance and have
cultural exchanges with other young people. The tour is a part of Tibet Foundation’s 20th Anniversary
Celebrations, aimed at increasing awareness of Tibetan culture in
the West. It will highlight the importance of education for exiled
Tibetan refugee children. This provides a unique opportunity for the
refugee children to gain insight into British education, culture and
social values. The children will visit Newcastle, Glasgow,
Llangollen, Liverpool, Manchester, Bridgewater, Devon, London and
East Sussex.

The Dalai Lama calls them “the future seeds of Tibet.”
At present, 2145 children are studying at THF and 253 students are
in colleges in India.

North East

Mon 24 & Tue 25 Jan – Newcastle
The Sage Gateshead
Contact: 0191 443 4583 (Sarah Kekus)

Wed 26 & Thu 27 Jan – Northumberland
Queen’s Hall, Hexham
Contact: 01434 652 482 (Amanda Gould)

Scotland

Fri 28 Jan – Glasgow
Lilybank Special School
Contact: 01475 715 703 (Eileen Stewart)

South East/London

Sat 29 Jan @ 6.30pm – London (Public Event)
The Steiner Theatre
Contact: 020 7930 6001 (Tibet Foundation)

South West

Mon 31 Jan – Bridgewater
Sedgemoor Manor Junior School
Contact: 01278 424 725 (Rob Clarke)

Mon 31st Jan @ 8pm – Devon (Public Event)
The Plough Arts Centre
Contact: 01805 624624 (Box Office)

Wales

Thu 3 Feb – Llangollen
Telephone: 01978 860 669 (Peter Williams)

Fri 4 Feb – Llangollen (Public Event)

Royal International Pavilion
Contact: 01978 860 111 (box office)
Tibet Foundation 020 7930 6001

North West

Sun 6 Feb @ 6.30pm – Manchester (Public Event)
University of Manchester
Contact: 0161 225 9954 (Paul Dewhirst)
Tibet Foundation 020 7930 6001

Mon 7 Feb – Liverpool
Broadgreen High School
Contact: 01257 464 404 (Anne Candlin)

Tue 8 Feb – Liverpool
Liverpool Hope University College
Contact: 0151 291 3612 (Barry Grantham)

South East

Thu 10 Feb – East Sussex
Lewes New School
Contact: 01273 477074 / 01273 477990

Fri 11 Feb at 7pm – London (Public Event)
Tibet Foundation Losar Reception
Contact: 020 7930 6001 (Tibet Foundation)

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San Francisco Bay Area World and Folk Music Artists Organizing Tsunami Benefit Concert

San Francisco, California, USA – Musicians
Judith Kate Friedman and Billy Cauley Jr.,
Kitka, musicians from Gamelan Sekar Jaya,
Avotcha and Modupue;
and others soon to be announced,
are organizing and will perform a benefit concert to raise funds for vital
humanitarian and medical relief to victims of the tsunami disaster in the Indian
Ocean Basin.

The concert will take place on
Thursday, January 20, 2005 at 8 p.m. at the
Julia Morgan Theater located at
2640 College Ave.,
Berkeley, California.
Suggested donation: $25 and up.
For up to date information call 510/548-3655
or email: songwritingworks@aol.com.Because the intent of this concert is specifically to raise funds for
organizations providing relief in tsunami disaster-torn regions, organizers are asking
for donations of $25 and up for admission to this event. “If lack of funds is a
reality for you, but you still wish to be a part of this event, please contact
Judith Kate Friedman at songwritingworks@aol.com to find out how you can assist
with event promotion, production, and/or follow-up. There’s lots of work to be
done and no one will be turned away from participation for lack of funds
.”

[Photo: Kitka, by Sherry Rayn Barrett].

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Prasanna Performs at Tsunami Relief Concert in Washington DC Area

India – Electric guitar virtuoso

Prasanna
, from India, will be playing a special jazz fusion concert on
Friday January 7, 2005, in the Washington DC metro area to help raise money for
the relief efforts. “I am as shook up as you all are, in the light of the
tragic events in South Asia
.”

The concert will be held at the Walt Whitman High School
Auditorium at 8 p.m. The venue is located at 7100 Whittier Boulevard, Bethesda,
MD 20817. Line-up: Prasanna – guitars/vocals; Mike Pope – bass; and Brian
Delaney – drums. Prasanna will also play live at Open Air Theatre, Iit, in Chennai, India on
January 26, 2005. “I will be playing at my alma mater Indian Institute of
Technology, Chennai, India with a great lineup featuring Grammy Award winning
saxophonist Jeff
Coffin (Bela Fleck and the Flecktones), the cool bassist Kai Eckhardt (John
McLaughlin, Billy Cobham, Trilok Gurtu, Stanley Clarke) and the two-time Grammy
Award winning drummer Will Calhoun (Living Colour, Wayne Shorter, Pharaoh Sanders, Run DMC, Mos Def)
.

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Folk Alliance – 11th Annual Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Washington, D.C., USA – The Folk Alliance has announced the 11th Annual
Lifetime Achievement Awards, which will be presented at their international
conference. This year the Folk Alliance honors Southern singer, freedom marcher,
Odetta;
Maritime songwriter, humanitarian,
Stan
Rogers
; and the Newport Festival whose
blend traditional and contemporary folk performers shaped musical history. The
presentation will be made at the convention, during the luncheon banquet on
Thursday, February 24, 2005 at the Hyatt Regency Montreal. For information call
301-588-8185 or go to on-line registration for the conference at
www.folk.org.The Newport Folk Festival is the site of some of the most important moments of
the 1960’s folk revival. From an eighteen year old Joan Baez’s appearance with
Bob Gibson in 1959 to Bob Dylan’s electric appearance in 1965, the folk revival
was largely defined on the stages of the Newport Folk Festival (and recorded for
posterity by Vanguard records). George Wean and Albert Grossman founded the
Newport Folk Festival in 1959, Newport began to find its footing as a blend of
the best of traditional and contemporary folk began to shape musical history in
that idiom. Pete Seeger and Theodore Bikel convinced George Wein to make the
festival a non-profit organization to be overseen by the Newport Folk
Foundation. . It was during this period Robert L. Jones joined the team as
musical director. Originally from the Boston area, Bob first became interested
in folk music as an artist—a balladeer who performed regularly in Cambridge
clubs and coffeehouses.

The Festival introduced audiences to both legendary traditional musicians like
Mississippi John Hurt, Dewey Balfa, and Reverend Gary Davis, as well as up and
coming popular folk entertainers including James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, Joan
Baez, Janis Ian, and Peter, Paul & Mary The festival ran in its original form
until 1971, when it was cancelled by the organizers who feared growing unrest.

After a fifteen-year hiatus, there was a Symphony Hall reunion concert featuring
many alumni from past Newport Folk Festivals, followed soon after by a revival
of the festival itself. In recent years the festival has presented many emerging
artists including Alison Krauss, Nanci Griffith, and Patty Larkin and continues
to be one of the most influential festivals in North America.

The Lifetime Achievement awards are given to those that have achieved definitive
leadership in their field, have contributed to the advancement of folk music
and/or dance and who have inspired us through their presence. Each year two
performers, one living and one deceased, and a person or institution involved in
the business or academic side of the folk world are honored. Each recipient will
receive an original colored wood-block print, commissioned by the Folk Alliance
for the Lifetime Achievement Award by artist Paul Ritscher.

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Princess Dorothy

Singer-Songwriter Dorothy Cox has a new album, Princess
Dorothy,
a fusion of inter-cultural grooves. Dorothy was born in Zimbabwe of
multicultural origins and considers herself a world citizen. She is based in
Switzerland and travels worldwide pursuing an international career in music and
film. Princess Dorothy begins with a funky uptempo “Mixed & Others” followed by
“Never Give Up” a mid-tempo song about the empowerment of women. “Madman’s
Paradise” is a poetic ballad. “Every Day” throbs with dance-beat incantations
then she bursts into “Something” a catchy song. The moving vocal-double bass
duet “No Man’s Land” leads to Dorothy’s expressive voice. “Everybody’s got the
Blues” whips up interaction between vocals and guitar. “I’ll be There” leads
into uptempo grooves with reggae undertones. “Got to be Strong” is a gospel
style crescendo. The album ends with an ethereal ballad called “Space Walking.”

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