Posts Tagged ‘Mayte Martin’

playlist #159 (5/16/11)-new tunes & jazz fest folk

May 17, 2011

World of Music
Pgm #159 – Featuring new tunes & artists playing at this year’s Burlington Discover Jazz Festival, June 3rd-12th
Catch the show on Mondays 3-5pm ET – at 105.9FM in Burlington, VT or online at The Radiator
Nas with Youssou N’Dour & Neneh Cherry: Wake Up (It’s Africa Calling) / Open Remix (download) – (USA / SENEGAL)
Victoria Abril: Jolie môme / Olala! / Topami 88697200602 – (SPAIN)
Gotan Project: Diferente / Lunático / ¡Ya Basta! 195 – (FRANCE)
Les Doigts de L’Homme: Blue Skies / 1910 / Cristal 2010 – (FRANCE) * Featured at the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival on 6/12: *
The Jolly Boys featuring Albert Minott: Ring of Fire / Great Expectation / GeeJam 2134 – (JAMAICA) *NEW*
James Blake: Limit To Your Love / James Blake / Universal Republic 2 – (UK) *NEW*
Constantinople & Françoise Atlan: Afuera, Afuera, Ansias Mias / Premiers Songes / Analekta 9989 – (MEXICO) *NEW*
Vinicius Cantuária & Bill Frisell: Lágrimas Mexicanas / Lágrimas Mexicanas / EOM 2110 – (BRAZIL / USA) *NEW*
Michèle Choinière: Tant Mon Mari / La Violette / 2010 – (MADE IN VT)
Myra Melford’s Be Bread: Moon Bird / The Whole Tree Gone / Firehouse 120401012 – (USA) * Featured at the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival on 6/9: *       Bombino: Assalam Felawan / Agadez / Cumbancha Discovery 20 – (NIGER) *NEW*
Crecencio Camacho y El Super Combo Curro: Santana en Salsa / Cartagena! / Soundway Records 26 – (COLOMBIA) *NEW*
Samir & Sanghamitra Chatterjee: Ami Jabo / Guru Pranam-The Eternal Songs of Sri Chinmoy / Chhandayan Publications 15 – (INDIA) *NEW*
Rajery: Mandehandeha / Sofera / Marabi 46820 – (MADAGASCAR)
Mayte Martin: En Aquel Tiempo / Al Cantar A Manuel / World Village 468087 – (SPAIN)
Vusi Mahlasela: Mokalanyane / Say Africa / ATO Records 88088-21722 – (SOUTH AFRICA)
Tiempo Libre: Mecánica (More is Less) / My Secret Radio / Sony Masterworks 88697-84585 – (CUBA) *NEW*
Didier Sustrac: Tout Seul (Completely Alone) / Bossa Nova Around the World / Putumayo 306 – (FRANCE)
Malika Zarra: Berber Taxi / Berber Taxi / Motéma 60 – (MOROCCO) *NEW*
Sergent Garcia: Una y Otra Vez / Una y Otra Vez / Cumbancha 19 – (FRANCE) *NEW – being released tomorrow! *
MC Solaar: Perfect / MC Solaar / Polydor 557603 – (FRANCE)
Paris Combo: Lettre A P… / Paris / Putumayo 249 – (FRANCE)

2010 in the rearview: what’s to love in music, part 2

December 31, 2010

The year-end survey continues – a few more of my favorite recordings from 2010:

Stile Antico: “Media vita” – This is the fourth recording from the young choir Stile Antico. They’re 14 members strong with a singular strong artistic vision that’s wasting no time establishing them in good company with groups like Anonymous 4. “Media vita” features choral music by the Tudor composer John Sheppard, a oft-overlooked contemporary of higher profile composers Thomas Tallis and (the somewhat younger) William Byrd. The real appeal of Sheppard’s outwardly austere harmonies reveals itself in washes (rather than flashes) of color, and the occasional dissonance and disharmony created with passing tones. The pure performance aesthetic of Stile Antico assures you hear every complexity and nuance in the various layers of music. This is one of two recordings from Stile Antico this year, the other is “Puer natus est” for Christmastime. I enjoyed both but prefer “Media vita” for its handling of the unusual repertoire.

Luisa Maita: “Lero-Lero” and “Maita Remixed” – This is actually two-in-one. Luisa Maíta’s debut album “Lero-Lero” was released in July, and it almost immediately spawned (in November) a remix treatment from notables like Maga Bo, Seiji, and DJ/rupture. Whether your tastes run to traditional Brazilian samba and bossa sounds (on “Lero-Lero”), or to the contemporized versions of the same material on the “Remixed” album, Maíta delivers her original songs with understated sultry flair. There is consistency of quality from track to track on these recordings, but not at the sacrifice of variety in tone and flavor. The message is clear: this is Brazil NOW.

Vijay Iyer: “Solo” – For an artist with a decade and a half experience it’s a little surprising it’s taken Vijay Iyer this long to offer the world a solo recording. I wasn’t sure what to expect with “Solo”, given Iyer’s artistic involvement with everything from hip-hop to improvisational collaborations and larger ensemble (orchestral) work. It’s worth the wait, and the question about all of those previous influences is answered by the fact that Iyer’s solo work is a rich blend of all of them. There’s the recording’s simple introduction with “Human Nature”, a song that digs deep into Iyer’s emotional abilities and reminds me of the supreme sensitivity and awareness heard with pianists like Bill Evans (always) and Keith Jarrett (in his best playing). And then you can hear Iyer’s spirited homage to Duke Ellington with “Black and Tan”, and his moving take on Monk’s “Epistrophy”. There is nothing about “Solo” that doesn’t ring true, from the standards (and not-so standard “standards”) to Iyer’s own forward-looking compositions. Look for more great things from this evolving young pianist.

Roland Tchakounté: “Blues Menessen” – What if John Lee Hooker had called his home West Africa? Cameroon’s Roland Tchakounté offers an answer to that thought – at least in part – with his searing bluesy guitar and deep, affecting vocals. And, he’s cool. But the John Lee Hooker comparison can’t be carried too far, Tchakounté is very much his own artist. He recorded two albums in Douala before he left Africa to live in France a few years ago. “Blues Menessen” was released this past May as his latest, most commercial recording. It is blues, but it’s not the West African/Sahara Touareg (think: Tinariwen) blues we’ve become familar with in recent years. This is fairly straightahead American Delta-style blues with an African accent, sung in Tchakounté’s native West Cameroonian language bamileke. It’s both unusual and familiar at the same time. The songs run a wide range of styles, from consistently rhythmic to more free-ranging and moodily interpretive. I love this recording.

Lobi Traoré: “Rainy Season Blues” – I couldn’t mention Roland Tchakounté without also talking about fellow Malian blues man Lobi Traoré. It was quite a shock this year to learn of his June 1st death. The circumstances aren’t completely clear (and of course, not especially important anyway). We do know that Traoré was 49 years old and had enjoyed great success in recent years. A year prior in the summer of 2009, he had met with producer Chris Eckman to lay down tracks for a new recording  featuring just his voice and guitar. What an ideal opportunity for an artist. The result is the new posthumous collection “Rainy Season Blues” – a quietly personal insight into Traoré’s art, featuring exclusively original material.  Traoré sings in Bambara on themes of peace, politics, and family. “Rainy Season Blues” is something like the ‘unplugged’ counterpart to the earlier “Mali Blues” album, and its rewards are equally sweet. Make that bittersweet, since this is also Traoré’s final musical statement. He will be greatly missed.

There are a LOT of other recordings I could mention…here’s a short list:

Mayte Martin: “Cantar a Manuel” – gorgeous flamenco singing from Spain.

Galactic: “Ya-ka-may” – down home SUPER funky sassy, brassy soul grooves from New Orleans…in fact, New Orleans gave the world several other hot releases this year too, including albums from Trombone Shorty (“Backatown”), Kermit Ruffins (“Happy Talk”), and Dr. Michael White (“Blue Crescent”).

Antonin Dvořák’s complete Symphonic Poems, with Charles Mackerras & the Czech Philharmonic (on Supraphon) – this is the contemporary recording of the Poems we’ve been waiting for.

Gil Scott-Heron: “‘I’m New Here” – gritty, original, real, with all the usual great observations about life and our society. Scott-Heron’s first recording in 15 years, and WHAT a return.

Joan Soriano: “El Duque de la Bachata” – singing, blistering guitar-driven melodies from the Dominican Republic.

Frederic Chopin’s late masterpieces with pianist Stephen Hough (on Hyperion) – a perfectly crafted recording to celebrate Chopin’s 200th anniversary year.

Oswin Chin Behilia: “Liber” – politically-infused, lyrically Caribbean songs from a soulful guitar master.

I guess it has to end somewhere, so that’s it for this year’s wrap-up. Cheers to another year of good listening in 2011!

playlist #139 (12/13/10)-listening to 2010, pt. 2

December 13, 2010

World of Music
Pgm #139 – The second of four shows dedicated to some of the best international music of 2010
Catch the show on Mondays 3-5pm EDT – at 105.9FM in Burlington, VT or online at The Radiator
Nas with Youssou N’Dour & Neneh Cherry: Wake Up (It’s Africa Calling) / Open Remix / (download) – (USA / SENEGAL)
Spanish Harlem Orchestra: Mi Herencia Latina / Viva La Tradición / Concord Picante 32263 – (NY CITY, USA) * 2010 Grammy nominee: Best Tropical Latin Album *
Angélique Kidjo: Kelele / Õÿö / (demo) – (BENIN) * 2010 Grammy nominee: Best Contemporary World Music Album *
Lee “Scratch” Perry: Scary Politicians / Revelation / Megawave 342 – (JAMAICA) * 2010 Grammy nominee: Best Reggae Album *
Bassekou Kouyaté & Ngoni Ba featuring Harouna Samake: Torin Torin / I Speak Fula / Next Ambience-Out Here Records 1 – (MALI) * 2010 Grammy nominee: Best Traditional World Music Album *
Anadolu University Folkdance Ensemble: Adiyaman / Turkey-Traditional Music / ARC Music 2301 – (TURKEY)
The Cottars: Fare Thee Well, Northumberland & The Purple Wave / Feast / Rounder 7068 – (CAPE BRETON)
Soulive: Day Tripper / Rubber Soulive / Royal Family Records 1003 – (BUFFALO, USA)
Los Illusionistas: Colegiala / The Roots of Chicha 2: Psychedelic Cumbias from Peru / Barbès Records 28 – (PERU)
Mayte Martin: Al Sur de Los Limones & En Aquel Tiempo / Al Cantar A Manuel / World Village 46087 – (SPAIN)
Trio Zamora: Vacilon / The Lost Cuban Trios of Casa Marina / Ahi-Nama 1068 – (CUBA)
Eliades Ochoa, Toumani Diabaté & Friends: Mali Cuba / Afrocubism / World Circuit 525993 – (CUBA/AFRICA)
Red Baraat: Tunak Tunak Tun / Chaal Baby / Sin Records 110 – (NY CITY, USA)
Joan Soriano: Mi Último Llanto / El Duque de la Bachata / iASO 5 – (DOMINICAN REPUBLIC)         4:47
Dota und Die Stadtpiraten: Ohrsteckermädchen / Bis Auf Den Grund / Kleingeld Prinzessin Records 12708 – (GERMANY)
Manicato: Familia / Familia / 2010 – (SAN FRANCISCO, USA)
Queen City Hot Club: Swing Gitan / Queen City Hot Club / (demo) – (MADE IN VT)
Michele Choinière: La Bergère / La Violette / – (MADE IN VT)
Guagua: Subterranean Subterfuge / Tres / – (MADE IN VT)
Swing Noire: Tchavolo Swing / Hot Jazz in the Tradition of Django Reinhardt & the Quintette of the Hot Club of France / – (MADE IN VT)
Ray Vega & Thomas Marriott: It’s a New York Thing / East-West Trumpet Summit / Origin 82561 – (MADE IN VT)
Julio Boom y Ikano MC: El Boom Boom / El Boom Boom / TUMI 159 – (CUBA)
The Chieftains featuring Ry Cooder & Lila Downs: El Relampago / San Patricio / Hear Music 31321 – (IRELAND/USA/MEXICO)


December 10, 2010

If your impressions of flamenco music are furious guitars, fast dancing, castanets and flashy costumes – well, you’re partly right. That’s a pretty fair description of flamenco dancing. But flamenco is also a soulful, emotional style of singing native to Spain – cante flamenco – and Mayte Martín is one of its top singers today.

I’ve been completely captivated recently by her understated new recording,  alCANTARaMANUEL on World Village music. It’s lyrical, poetic, and purely powerful. Martín has a supreme sensitivity to the nuances of language and phrasing, which works especially well with the  material on this recording – alCANTARaMANUEL features Martín’s own musical settings of poetry by early/mid-20th c. Spanish poet Manuel Alcántara.

I’m  always interested in looking at other folks’ year-end “best albums” lists, but I’m cautious about creating my own because it seems so completely and pointlessly subjective. How can I say what’s best, when I haven’t hear everything that’s come out in a given year? But I will say, when it comes to this new recording – it is unquestionably one of my favorites for this year.

To learn a little more about her, check out this interview with Mayte Martin . And DO get your hands (ears) on a copy of her new recording as soon as you can, it’s a real treasury of beautiful sound and expression.

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