Crosseyed & Painless | Community Idea Stations


Crosseyed & Painless

Don’t let that title scare you. On this week’s World Music Show (6/9) neither of those things will happen. However, it is a reference to one of the first tracks we’ll be hearing from the latest CD by Angelique Kidjo. But more on that in a moment.

For the roundabout overview, for those in a rush, this week’s show will be filled a bit of new music, a bit of 2-Tone music, some Irish tracks and a chunk of percussion.

Now for the nitty-gritty. We’ll kick off the first hour with a chunk of Heads. Ok, what I mean by that relates to the headline for this week. Crosseyed & Painless is a song from the groundbreaking Talking Head’s album “Remain in Light.” The album blended a whole bunch of Afrobeat beats into their new wave/New York artscene music. At the time (well before Paul Simon’s “Graceland” and Peter Gabriel’s collaborations), the Talking Heads were diving into world beats, thanks mostly to David Byrne, who made regular stops in record stores looking to stretch his album collection.

When that album came out, a young Angelique Kidjo, heard the music and identified with its Afrobeat roots. Kidjo grew up in Benin, where for a time, Western music was readily available. But her and her family had to flee to Paris when a dictatorship happened. That’s the abreviated story. But the sounds of "Remain in Light" stuck with her for years. And since she’s no stranger to doing world music covers of Western songs (Curtis Mayfield, The Rolling Stones, U2), it made sense for her to tackle the whole album as opposed to just covering “Once in a Lifetime.” And I’m glad she did.

In a way Kidjo shakes the dust off of this great LP and (to be cliche) breathes some new life into "Remain in Light," giving us her strong voice that is equally matched by even stronger beats. So, to honor this triumph, we’ll hear two tracks, namely “Crosseyed & Painless” and “Houses in Motion.”

And to keep the Heads rolling (sorry about that pun), we’ll also hear two new tracks from David Byrne’s latest CD “American Utopia.” Byrne is on a world tour right putting on an amazing stage show in support of this album. In effect, the first four songs are a chunk of Heads.

To keep your head rolling, other new music I’ll be featuring this week include new songs from percussionist Lara Klaus. Klaus, who is one part of the quartet of the women in Ladama, just put out a solid album. Not only does she play some amazing percussion on “Forca do Gesto” but she sings as well (granted, I’m sure she sings on many a Ladama project, but it’s great to hear her on a whole album). I’m working on an interview with her, so stayed tuned for that. Keeping up in the percussion arena, we’ll also hear from local Hector Coco Barez.

For a different take on local, we’ll hear from a musician named Ben Caplan. Caplan, who was born  and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, moved to Halifax for college but stayed when he discovered the city’s rich and interwoven music scene. There he founded a band called The Casual Smokers,who mix folk with Klezmer and his raw and unique voice to create a unique sound. He’s playing next week on June 16th at The Camel in Richmond. We’ll hear a song called “Widow Maker.”

Continuing in the land of new (as opposed to the Land of the Lost *Yes, that 70s kid’s show), we’ll also hear a beautiful instrumental cut from Bombino’s latest CD “Deran.” And we’ll hear another cut from the new Ziggy Marley CD “Rise to Rebellion,” as well as another track from the latest by Brazilian Domenico Lancelotti’s new CD “The Good is a Big God,” and if that were’n’t enough, we’ll hear the title track from the new album by the Cyprus band Monsieur Doumani called “Angathin.”

O ther highlights for this week include music from AfroCelt Soundsystem, The Chieftians, Gaelic Storm, Nina Miranda, Meklit and Vieux Farka Toure. And as for that 2-Tone music, we’ll head back to the 80s when 2-Tone started (it’s an offshoot of Ska and sort of like Ska revival music), we’ll hear from The Selecter and The Special AKA.

Of course, I’m leaving out a chunk of other great music. You’ll just have to tune into the World Music Show, Saturday night at 8:00 p.m. on 93.1 or 107.3FM WCVE Music. Or you can stream the show via this website. You can also check out track listings and read past blogs here. Follow me on Twitter @wcveworldmusic and on Facebook at The World Music Show on WCVE.