I feel like I may have eggnog or stuffing starting to infiltrate the confines of my head. It could be the oncoming Holiday flurry that will soon overtake all of us like a swatch of gravy on a pile of mashed potatoes. Or it could be that, with the Holidays coming, the small space in my brain, only has room for a few limited items. Either way, I'll get right to the mix. On this week's World Music Show (11/19), it'll be like a feast of sounds for your ears--which is a good thing (and better for the waistline).
We'll kick off this week with another listen to Malaysian singer and ukelele player, Zee Avi. Her voice is like smooth silk on a cool autumn night. It's deep, rich and velvety. We'll move on to a couple of songs from Brazilian Seu Jorge, who, like Avi, has a very unique voice (though, his octaves are rich in a different way). In a good pairing, I'll feature him along side another legendary musician from Brazil, Sergio Mendes.
And, speaking of pairings, in another chunk o' music, The Gipsy Kings will be next a couple of songs by Mexico's Cafe Tacuba. Although the Kings were born in France, their parents were mostly gitanos, Spanish Romani people who fled Catalonia during the 1930s Spanish Civil War. They are known for bringing Rumba Catalana, a pop-oriented music distantly derived from traditional flamenco music, to worldwide audiences. Either way, both bands play really great Latin music.
The end the first hour, it'll be a mini-French party with a track by the French trio We are Enfant Terrible, who are two french boys and a girl trio from Paris created in May 2008. Their songs have an electro dance sound with indie rock and synthpop sounds, with a touch of 8bit music. They are known for using a re-programmed Nintendo gameboy on stage. I'll pair them with the late French superstar Serge Gainsbourg. This guy had his hands in all sorts of artistic endeavors, from songwriting and singing to acting and writing books. And, in his music, he covered everything from French pop and rock in the 1960s and 70s, to reggae and Jazz later on his career. I'll feature a song he did with his one-time muse Bridget Bardot, called "Bonnie & Clyde."
If hour one sounds like good stuff, then you should stick around for hour two. We'll kick off the hour with Reggae great Shabba Ranks singing a duet of sorts called "Pirates Anthem" with Coca T & Home T. And, I'll feature a Reggae tune from both UB40 and The Pioneers, it'll be a great way to ease into the hour. Another highlight will be a couple of songs from Jamacia's The Jolly Boys, featuring Albert Minott. They play a style of music called Mento, which predates both Reggae and Ska. On their album "Great Expectations," they do all cover songs. You'll hear them cover both The Clash and Steely Dan.
And now it's time to talk about "The Dissenter." There is a singer/songwriter in Russia by the name of Yuri Shevchuk. He first came to fame in Russia by heading the rock band DDT, who he still occasionally performs with. But his main rise to prominance came from his solo career. Often compared the likes of Bob Dylan or Bono, Shevchuk is known for his biting lyrics about the struggles of the working class in both the former Soviet Union and present day Russia. He's also been known to oppose Pop Music. Back in 2008 he organized two peace concerts in Moscow and Saint Petersburg as a protest to the Russian-Georgian war. The name of the concert "Don't Shoot" was taken from his song "Ne Strelyai" that he had written in 1980 as a response to the Soviet war in Afghanistan. I'll feature a couple of live tracks from a concert back in 2001.
Hopefully, it'll be another humdinger of a show. The World Music Show aires Saturday nights at 10:00 p.m. on WCVE Public Radio. During the broadcast, you can follow a live-tweet fest with me. Look me up @wcveworldmusic