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  • LIFE

    A colourful hybrid

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 28/05/2019

    » It was the barefoot diva Cesaria Evora who put the Cape Verde Islands on the musical map, with her breakout albums and international tours in the 1990s. She sang a melancholic and intimate style called morna, a hybrid music fused from Portuguese fado music and local traditional styles.

  • LIFE

    Ry Cooder returns to gospel roots

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 16/10/2018

    » American guitarist Ry Cooder released his first studio album for six years recently. The Prodigal Son (Fantasy Recordings, USA) has put aside his more politically engaged music -- as heard on a series of albums, Chavez Ravine (2005), My Name Is Buddy (2007), Pull Up Some Dust And Sit Down (2011) and Election Special (2012) and returned to a more-gospel oriented sound that he created on his early albums.

  • LIFE

    Three is the magic number

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 30/01/2018

    » This week World Beat considers three stringed instruments from Africa: the valiha from Madagascar, kora from West Africa and oud from North Africa (which may have originated in what was Persia). All these instruments are plucked and 10 years ago, a bright spark in the music business thought it would be a good idea to bring together three master pluckers of these three instruments to see what music they might create. The result was the 3MA project release back in 2008.

  • LIFE

    Sounds from Soweto

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 08/03/2016

    » I first saw the all-singing, all-dancing Mahotella Queens back in the late 1980s, when they were on their epic tour of Europe, Asia, and the Americas, with their incomparable backing band, Makgona Tsohle, and leader singer, Simon "Mahlathini" Nkabinde. After years of having their movements restricted in their own country, they found themselves celebrated all over the world for their irresistible mbaqanga music, a genre they helped create in South Africa's "townships" in the 1960s.

  • LIFE

    New releases for June

    Life, John Clewley, Published on 23/06/2015

    » Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba continue to dominate the top spot on this month's European Broadcast union Top 10 World Music chart. The Malian, who has brought the ngoni or Malian lute, to global fame, is on a hectic summer touring schedule that sees the band play in European and US festivals. Catch him if you can but if you can't get his new album Ba Power.

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