Category World/International

James Whetzel

James Whetzel – Man with a Movie Camera (self-released)

Gorgeous results of a Seattle International Film Festival commission to create a new soundtrack for the renowned 1929 documentary/art film by Dziga Vertov. Composed & performed by Sarod master Whetzel, with Asian flavors & prominent percussion. Most tracks are quite short; nearly all are quite interesting! Watch the film with the new soundtrack here

Mamak Khadem

Mamak Khadem – The Road (Innova)

Trancey world fusion w/strong Persian & Eastern European flavors. Drawn from the traditional music & melodies of these regions, the arrangements are the work of vocalist Khadem along with the talented Iranian-American composer Jamshied Sharifi. Nicely done!

Qwanqwa

Qwanqwa – Volume Two (FPE Records)

Super fine experimental, trancey, Ethiopian rock recorded in Addis Ababa. Features traditional instruments plus violinist Kaethe Hostetter, formerly of the Boston-based Ethio-funk band Debo Band, who moved to Ethiopia & formed the band in 2012. Awesome! Visit their website Listen to the CD

Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano

Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano – Tradicion, Arte Y Passion (Smithsonian Folkways)

Listen with an open mind… Here is authentic, passionate, Grammy Award-winning Mariachi music, really well done, with lots of musicality & creativity. Every song rewards close listening.

Zemog el Gallo Bueno

Zemog el Gallo Bueno – YoYouMeTu Trilogy (Afinque)

Combines elements of Latin pop rock, cumbia, salsa, Latin jazz in unpredictable & often intriguing ways. With a childhood in Peru, then Puerto Rico, then with changing fortunes in the USA, composer & bandleader Abraham Gomez-Delgado’s life is an experiment in Latin fusion. CD 1 is earlier work & CD 2 is new material. Try […]

La Vie Est Belle Life Is Beautiful

Petite Noir – “La Vie Est Belle / Life Is Beautiful”

Petite Noir is the alias of South African singer-songwriter, Yannick Ilunga. On this debut LP, we see Ilunga passionately define his own alternative-R&B sound by combining elements of rock, hip-hop, 80s new wave and dance music with incorporated elements of his own Congolese/Angolan ancestry. The tracks throughout this album are thrilling and rhythmic, but still […]

ToureEasterlin

Vieux Farka Toure & Julia Easterlin – Touristes (Six Degrees)

Cross-cultural collaboration between the “Jimi Hendrix of Mali” (Vieux) and a talented early-career American vocalist who ventures into soul, blues, jazz, & pop on various tracks (Julia). Lots of variety here. Smokey vocals & smokin’ guitar make for a really nice mix.

Tom Teasley Dreams of India

Tom Teasley – Dreams of India (self-released)

Our former Cultural Envoy in the Middle East, a master of percussion, returns with another evocative collection of rich sonic tapestries, this time inspired by traditionally Indian & Middle Eastern themes, embellishments, & instruments. Has a quiet, meditative feel. Nice! Official website

tiggerbenford

Tigger Benford & Party – Vessel of Gratitude (self-released)

Percussion oriented World-jazz fusion composed by Rutgers University professor Benford, who also plays the marimba & amadinda (Ugandan xylophone) on this recording. There’s also violin, oud, & bazouki (like a mandolin), which adds Middle Eastern flavors. Nice stuff! Official website

Western Standard Time

Western Standard Time – A Big Band Tribute to the Skatalites Vol II (self-released)

Said to be (Vol II of) the first old-school big band ska project, undertaken with more than 20 world class ska & big band jazz musicians. Really tight & dynamic horn section, true ska percussion, & brilliant arrangements!

nanostern

Nano Stern – Mil 500 Vueltas (self-released)

From busking on the streets of Santiago Chile to filling stadiums with fans, Nano has been hailed by some as the best Chilean singer/songwriter of his generation. Music ranges from Latin folk-pop to gorgeous romantic ballads. UVM Lane Series performance: Oct 8, 2015 Official website

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Gaia Sadhana- Trancescapes

Trancescapes is an open improvisational musical group with this debut CD from Spring Hill Records.  If you need a yoga break this may be the music to play from a group in Edmonton, Canada who believe magic can happen spontaneously using organic instruments, open-minded musicians and a variety of musical influences.  Enjoy this meditative experience.

Taranta Project

Ludovico Einaudi – Taranta Project (Ponderosa)

A gorgeous collection of deep, thoughtful, cinematic compositions from this well-known Italian pianist & composer. This project grew out of his directorship of “La Notte della Taranta” music festival in Southern Italy, working with local musicians & notable guests, as well as incorporating influences from Turkey, West Africa, India, & elsewhere. Super!

Three Voices

Šuranská, Lovász, & Kamal – Three Voices (Tri hlasy) (Indies Scope)

A beautiful recording that came about thanks to these 3 vocalists participating in a folk festival in the Czech Republic. Jitka Šuranská (Czech) set it up along with Hungarian Irén Lovasz, & Israeli singer of Iranian descent Michal Elia Kamal. Rich!

Musique de Nuit

Ballake Sissoko & Vincent Segal – Musique de Nuit (Six Degrees)

They’re back with new takes on their masterful blending of kora and cello. The first 5 tracks were recorded late at night on a rooftop in Mali (there is some ambient noise), and the rest in the studio, but they all have the feel of a very successful late night jam session. Introspective & poetic!

Vahagni

Vahagni – Imagined Frequencies (self-released)

Post-modern Spanish guitar compositions weaving flamenco, Armenian folk, & classical threads together in evocative patterns. The artist (“Va-Hogg-Ne”) was born in Armenia, lives in L.A., and spent years studying music in Spain. Original and yet timeless. Enjoy!

resistance

The Souljazz Orchestra – Resistance (Do Right!)

CD #8 from this playful six member band from Ottawa, yet again taking a fresh approach to their politically conscious, Afrobeat and tropical-funk infused, horn-driven sound. Enjoy! Official website

Daby Toure

Daby Toure – Amonafi (Cumbancha)

A West African youth who moved to Paris years ago, this vocalist, composer, & multi-instrumentalist has created his own sound; a pleasing synergy of traditional African styles, euro-pop, & je ne sais quoi. Try it! Label website with video

Empresarios

Empresarios – The Vibes (self-released)

This third CD from the well-known Washington, DC “Tropicaliente” collective explores new directions, & trends toward energetic Latin rock with reggae & hip-hop influences.

Vintage Latino

ANTH: Latin – Vintage Latino (Putumayo)

An aptly named collection of mellow, romantic tunes from bygone times in Cuba, Mexico, and all around South America.

black hawk singers

Wiskintowoganal wji Alnobac-Black Hawk Singers

New Songs For The Abenaki is new songs in the old language/original language of N’Dakinna (ancestral homeland of the Abenaki peoples or Vermont).  From the strong voices in chorus to the strong lead singers with Drum play all these tracks for an authentic Abenaki Living Culture experience.  Heard locally at a Pow Wow near you.  […]

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Path of Solitude and Healing-Kim Cedar Song

Visiting with us on Moccasin tracks, Kim Cedar Song is a local Abenaki flute player.  In this CD she shares her flute playing in a wonderful healing and soothing way.  Her songs are heart felt and can put dogs to sleep!  Play any track for instrumental movement of Solitude or connecting to the natural world.

Taranta-COVER-es-Quadrato

Ludovico Einaudi – Taranta Project (Ponderosa Music)

Composer/pianist Ludovico Einaudi here blends the traditional south Italian taranta  (a hypnotic sort of music/dance said to cure tarantula bites!) with Turkish and North African sounds — really interesting results! Among other guests, Malian kora master Ballake Sissoko makes an appearance. Some tracks are real stompers. If you like, check another Ponderosa taranta-themed release: that by […]

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Sacred Seed- Pura Fe

From the purafe.com website we quote Pura Fe who says, ” I found myself the day I was able to reconnect with my Indigenous Roots.”  Track 7 and 10, cover classics, gifts us with a deeper appreciation of  her voice and the cultural heritage that is expressed in her music and her commitment to accepting […]

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Justify-Indigie Femme

Partners in life and in music, Justify is a journey of Love.  Remembering those who have inspired from family to friends, Indigie Femme, Tash Terry  and Elena Higgins, gift us with their cultural blend of Dine, Maori and Samoa.  Track 8 includes words of a Dine sheepherder and is a tribute to a Sacred way […]

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