A World Music Jam Session
I've just decided that this week's World Music Show (10/26) theme is all about the jams. Why? It's simple, really. When you have two hours of various, stellar musicians from around the globe smooshed together in one place, what better thing can happen? And even though all 25 tracks were done separately, I'm going to imagine that all these musicians are having a jam session in the studios of 88.9 WCVE. Who's with me?
Now that you are, let's break it down by hour and by chunk of music or sets as they are apt to be called.
First out of the gates will be an acoustic jam session featuring French tunes by Thomas Dutronc (who comes from a musical family of singers, including his father, singer and film star Jacques Dutronc. And you'll hear the lovely voice of the former First Lady of France, and former model, Carla Bruni. Also in this set will be some Afro-Portuguese music from the Mozambique band Mabulu, who are a multigenerational musical collective; and from the singer Manecas Costa, who hails from Guinea-Bissau and who started his first band when he was only 9-years old. Plus you'll hear some surf-like guitar music from the Senegalese band Orchestra Baobab, who started as the house band in the Hotel Baobab in Dakar.
Keeping that acoustic vibe going into the next set will be a couple of tracks of Fado music. Fado music, which means destiny or fate and which started in Portugual, is usually mournful and soulful music about the sea or about the troubles of the poor. However, on these two tracks by the band Fado Em Si Bemol, the tunes will be more upbeat. Partnered in this chunk of music will be two tracks featuring a father and daugther and a multi-instrumentalist. We'll hear from Anoushka Shankar, her father Ravi and Karsh Kale doing a couple of songs from the CD "Breathing Under Water," which also features guest singers Sting and Norah Jones.
Closing out hour one will be a true jam session, at least digitally. We'll hear a couple of tunes from the long running, widely respected band out of East Los Angeles, Los Lobos. Plus we'll hear from Ugandan Kora player Kinobe (pictured above) and his band Soul Beat Africa. We'll end the hour with a long track from Fela Kuti and his band Egypt 80.
Thank goodness there's another hour of World Music, otherwise, all the musicians that I've lined up would be sad, what with no one to jam for. They'd all leave and go get a soda at Sheetz or something. Good thing I've secured them for hour two. Right off the bat, we'll hear a jam, mash-up featuring both Reggae and Brazilian music. Starting off with Brazilian Seu Jorge, then transitioning to Reggae Dancehall pioneer Shabba Ranks, then ending with the lovely voice of Brazilian singe Ceu.
From there we'll take a couple of global travels, namely to Africa and Asia, thanks to the record label Six Degrees, who have a knack for putting out some great compilations. From their "Africa Travels" CD, we'll hear Mabi Thobejane doing the song "Sidudla" (which is actually the "Gus Gus Remix," in case you're taking notes). And from their "Asian Travel" CD, we'll hear the band Ja Sha Taan and their song "Fun Da Mental (again, another remix--this one by Transglobal Underground and called "Karachi Deathcult Mix.").
Are you still with me? Good, because to close out this week's Jam Session, we'll throw together these artists: Beck, the Police, Pizzicato Five, Morcheeba and Cornerhop. It'll be like we spun the wheel of pop, lounge, reggae, electronica and electic tunes to end up with this jam. And if some of these names don't seem like they'd have any "World Music" connection, think again. Their beats and sounds--at least in the selections I picked, do have a World Music vibe going on.
So, there you have it. After these two hours of jamming music, perhaps you can all help me corral all these musicians into throwing a real, live jam session in the studios of WCVE. Do you think they'd all come? Perhaps if we aksed them nicely, like my mother used to always say, they will.
The World Music Show comes on the Radio or online Saturday nights at 8:00 p.m., on 88.9 WCVE, Richmond’s Public Radio station. You can follow show updates and other shenanigans on Twitter, @wcveworldmusic.