What’s going on for this week’s World Music Show (5/27)? Well, it’s a star-studded, full blown celebration of some newly released CDs. Or is that overselling it a bit? Either way, there is some great tunes lined up for this week. And, just to give you a taste, here’s a brief menu run-down.
In the appetizer section, your choices are as follows (though, really, you have no choice, since it’s been pre-selected. Perhaps this is a French menu?
Cafe Tacvba - Jei Beibi (Hey Baby): After a few weeks of only being able to play snippets from their new CD—their first in 5 years—I was finally sent the CD. So far, it’s been great fun to sift through all the songs. (So you can expect to hear more from this in later shows). The songs are unique, as per their usual style, but also show lots of depth (which many of their songs do). This alternative band from Mexico, who are on tour right now, continue to expand the genre of not only Latin Rock, but Rock & Roll in general. We’ll hear the songs “1-2-3,” and “Me Gusta tu Manera.”
Also in this appetizer section will be new songs from Little Jesus and La Vida Boheme. Now for some main courses.
Forro in the Dark - Sandcastle: Like Cafe Tacvba, Forro in the Dark have taken awhile to release new material—8 years in their case. But it was worth the wait. Their new tracks run the gamut of sound, from Ska influenced to sweeping gestures of sound, Forro takes another spin on the genre and amps it up from past recordings. I’ll play the tracks “Craudineia no Forro,” and “Rock de Pedra,” which features some great drumming.
Ondatropica - Baile Bucanero: Paired in the same set as Forro, we’ll travel from New York/Brazil to the streets of Bogota and the Isle de Providencia. It’s here that two musicians who met while traveling in Bogota, were both clutching bags filled with used records. From there, their love music led to recording with about 40 musicians from Columbia. The contrast between them and the place they recorded, they said, worked wonderfully. Bogota is known for it’s active, pinky DIY mentality and Isla de Providencia is known for it’s dancehall and reggae sounds. We’ll hear the songs “La Narnja Madura” and the first track “Commotion.”
As side dishes in the first hour, we’ll also hear new music from Battle of Santiago, Cilantro Boombox and a new tune from Irish singer Imelda May, who’ll be playing with Elvis Costello this June (more from her in a later show).
Alex Cuba - Lo Unico Constante: This latest CD by the Canadian/Cuban singer (or is it the other way round?) just continues to thrill me with each track. His songs are beautifully woven pieces of tapestry that don’t get bogged down on the sentimental or trite, in terms of style and rhythm. And each time I listen, I keep opening other doors in the tracks. His style is akin to some Cuban Folk mixed with classic R & B, but it’s more than that. Like many of the CDs that I love, I’ve been featuring track by track. The two cuts (which are 5 & 6) we’ll hear are “El Mismo Dolor” and “El Dia de Hoy.”
Ending the first course of meals (sorry to continue with the metaphor but once started, you’ve got to stick through) will be selections from Dayme Arocena and Zee Avi.
Opening up the second hour and course, we’ll dive headfirst into the new CD from Syrian musician Omar Souleyman - To Syria with Love: This is my first time hearing and playing tracks from Omar, even though this is his third, full-length CD. Souleyman, who comes from a very war-torn region, usually sings/raps with a political narrative (who wouldn’t?). But on To Syria, he departs from that and explores more elaborate keyboard and electronic and techno elements while weaving in a personal ode to his native country. We’ll hear the first track “Ya Boul Habari.”
Paired on the same plate as Omar, we’ll hear some desert blues guitar from Vieux Farka Toure and Bombino.
As for rest of the menu/show, it’ll be a mixed up smorgasbord of new sound from the likes of: Janka -Nabay and the Bubu Gang, Los Fabulous Cadillacs, Queztal (and their Eternal Getdown). Plus, new music from The Atomic Bomb! Band, which features Afrobeat sounds that include a bevy of musicians such as Joshua Redman and David Byrne.
Ending our humongous gorging of sound will be a set of covers from Quiero Creedence, which is a tribute CD featuring Latin musicians covering Creedence Clearwater Revival songs; Mexrrissey, Nouvelle Vague and Mariachi El Bronx covering Bob Dylan.
Grab your napkin and tune in the World Music Show Saturday from 8:00-10:00 p.m. to 88.9 WCVE Richmond Public Radio, or stream it via this website. Plus, join the folks and me for fun on Twitter @wcveworldmusic and on Facebook at The World Music Show on WCVE.