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  • LIFESTYLE

    Suphanburi Soul

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 30/04/2019

    » It's been a while since Bangkok-based Zudrangma Records has released any new compilations. Last week, the label put out two compilations that will be of great interest to fans of Thai (Central Plains) traditional music and molam from Isan.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Twenty-five years of musical magic

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 19/03/2019

    » This year is the 25th anniversary of the World Beat column. It began all the way back in February 1994. That's right, in the last century. We survived the millennium and have forged ahead into the 21st century.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Creating a buzz

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 19/02/2019

    » Some years ago, I reviewed Colin McPhee's marvellous book, A House In Bali, about life and gamelan music (traditional Balinese music -- mainly percussive and driven by metallophones or gongs) in Bali during the 1930s. Published in 1947, the book details how a young man, after hearing some rare gamelan music on old records, journeys to Bali in 1929 to seek the music that will change his life. It is an enchanting book, well worth reading.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Top of the world

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 05/02/2019

    » The European Broadcast Union's Top 10 Chart for February -- taken from radio DJ playlists across the continent -- has just been released and there are some stunning new albums for world music fans to check out.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Infectious grooves, taste sensations and shadow puppets

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 08/01/2019

    » World Beat was in the field in Pak Thong Chai, Nakhon Ratchasima, this past weekend for the annual Jim Thompson Farm party, bringing to a close the six-week farm tour which is open to the public.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Across generations, across Thailand

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 22/01/2019

    » Thai PBS held a fun event to celebrate Teacher's Day "Saraphan Lan Thung" or The Sonic Luk Thung Variety Show at the TV station's main compound last Wednesday. World Beat was there to enjoy the mini-festival.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Farewell to a punk pioneer

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 11/12/2018

    » Manchester in the mid- to late-1970s was dark and moody. The International Monetary Fund bailed out the UK economy with a £3.5 billion loan in 1976 as the pound sunk to record lows. There was bitter infighting in the Labour-led government and strikes were in the news headlines.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Joy to the world of music

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 25/12/2018

    » It's been a busy year for "World Music" fans. There have been some fabulous new releases from artists across the globe, and compilations of music that might easily have gone unnoticed. But while we are celebrating new music and golden hits from the past, some musical giants have left us for the great stage in the sky.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Sounds celebrating Mandela centenary

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 24/07/2018

    » This month World Beat joins the international celebrations to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa, anti-apartheid activist and visionary leader. Mandela was born on July 18, 1918, and passed away on Dec 5, 2013, having served 27 years in prison for his resistance to the racist apartheid system then operating in South Africa.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Musical archaeology

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 10/07/2018

    » James Cagney is regarded as one of the first gangster tough guys of Hollywood. Films like The Public Enemy (1931) made him a big star and his tough-guy persona belied his background as a dancer. If you look at the opening scene to his 1932 film Taxi, you'll hear him speaking fluent Yiddish, a "High German" language that originated with Ashkenazi Jewish communities and was later fused with other German dialects, as well as the Hebrew, Aramaic and Slavic languages.

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