vftn

“ ( Music ) is a means of union among people, indispensable for the life & progress towards well-being of individuals and of humanity. ”

– Tolstoy

VftN

Karibu    E Komo Mai    Welcome    добро пожаловать    Velkomen

Voices from the Nations aims to celebrate music from around the world, encouraging its incredible diversity and discovering the stories that help us understand the unique melodies and sounds. Over the years we have partnered with a variety of peoples within various ethnicities to help create and support special projects. Each one seeks to promote music from different cultures, traditional storytelling and collaborations, some that bring ancient sounds and modern styles together, producing a distinctive new sound.

This web site is a place where we share these adventures and stories, learning from the multiplicity of musical expressions that have been gifted to every tribe and every nation.

Voices from the Nations have also set up a charity. We have been able to help fund local initiatives, famine relief, building a medical dispensary, solar panels etc. through the sales of CD’s and DVD’s. 100% of sales from these projects support the artist’s villages and communities.

     

Martin and Rebekah

Bienvenido    Bienvenue    Herzlich Willkommen    Fàilte    Vítejte

Martin and Rebekah have a passion for creativity and storytelling. They are wanderers, learning from and linking up with artists from across the globe. As they travel, building friendships along the way, doors of creativity open and distinctive musical opportunities are formed.

In Hawai’i and New Zealand joint musical ventures between the people of the land and the incoming people has encouraged unity.

In Tanzania, working with the Wagogo people to help tell their story through music and video has funded digging a well and building a medical dispensary with solar power.

In Cambodia, we have built a relationship with an organization that provides both home and a school of the Arts for children who have been abandoned.

Martin and his drumming exploits!

Mirë se vini    Chum reap sour    Namaste    Haere mai    ยินดีต้อนรับ

Martin Neil is a drummer, percussionist and producer. On his travels, he has had amazing opportunities to sit with and learn from master drummers in the Americas, Africa, Asia and the Pacific. This has encouraged him to incorporate authentic indigenous rhythms and sounds into his performances. The tuelle (slit drums from Tahiti), Anklungs (bamboo shakers from Indonesia, kutirindingo (Mandinka drum from the Gambia), tama (talking drum from Nigeria) and the Native American flute are some of the many instruments that find a place in Martin’s “world beat” musical tapestry.

As Martin’s career has developed and grown his interest in other cultures hasn’t just broadened his musical vocabulary as a drummer, it has also opened up a whole world of fascinating projects to him. Martin has used his skills to bring together musicians from different races, creeds and colours to help bring about reconciliation, recognising the huge power that music has to influence the wider community. He has also seen, in many situations, how music can bring hope to the hopeless and a sense of routes and identity to those lost in the melee of situations beyond their control. All this has given him an incredible drive and enthusiasm for his playing and a depth of understanding of the impact of rhythm and sound that goes beyond any normal performance situation. He’s often heard saying with deep gratitude and laughter “I have the best job in the world!”….and maybe…. he has.

Latest  Music from the Nations

The latest collaboration with Mark Riley from the island of Kaua’i. The Hawaiian islands are now a melting pot of different people’s with unique styles and sounds. This collection of songs mixes some of these diverse components – rock, rap, country, and Jawaiian (a mix of Hawaiian and reggae).

Latest Blog Posts

Martin’s Blog
DSC02758 How long will the priest preach? - I found this curious sand hourglass in a church on Skaftö Island, Sweden. In days past, an hourglass was turned when the priest started preaching. Apparently, if he didn’t finish...
Ice music - Enjoying touring in Sweden and heard about Ice music – an orchestra whose instruments are made of ice.
Travel
IMG_1716 Africa - A vast continent that has at least 3000 distinct ethnic groups, (Nigeria alone has more than 370 recognised tribes) each with their own unique culture. Every time we visit, we...
DSC01871 Europe - When I fly back from other parts of the world to Europe, you are blinded by the colour of the land – green! The stories of our land and culture...
Instruments
Preparing for an evening of drums The Heartbeat of Music - The drum is one of the oldest known musical instruments, being played in various forms by nearly every people group in the world, producing a huge variety of sounds fashioned...
Marimba de Chiapas - Today whilst wandering around a local market in Cancun, Mexico we met Enrique and Porfirio – marimba players. They played a song from Chiapas, where it is thought that the...
Making West Coast (Native American) drum. - We spent a wonderful few days with Jerry and Leslie Chapman in Washington State learning about the stories and traditions behind drum making. Jerry, Stó:lō Nation, has been making drums...