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Yearly Archives: 2013

Spiritual poems from Russia

By | Music that inspires | No Comments

Found this wonderful collection of spiritual sung poems – The Oktay ensemble is the name of a children`s folklore-ethnographic ensemble who have  conducted ethnographic work on the musical culture of the “Staro Vera” (Old Believers) living in remote areas high up in the mountain headwaters of the great Siberian Yenisei river.

Translation – Read More

Hawaiian Chant

By | Oceania, Voice | No Comments

We had a great morning recording on the island of Hawai’i – we met Lokelani Dahl and she shared with us a few Hawaiian Oli (chants). The Hawaiian language was not written down until the 1820’s and so before this time there way of preserving history was through the use of songs, chants, and poems.  Read More

La música de la Mixteca – music from Oaxaca

By | Americas, Music that inspires | No Comments

Just had a wonderful afternoon discovering more about an area in Mexico that has fascinated me for a long time since I read an article in National Geographic. For most people Mariachi will be the music that is synonymous with Mexico. Yet this wonderful country is rich in different types of indigenous music that goes back  for at least 4000 years. Singer Eugenia León explores this wonderful heritage in a 3 part series. Here is one of the episodes.

Tanzania relief

By | Tanzania | No Comments
Mnase 1 076

Dear friends – the news of famine in Tanzania is not good and according to Switzerland-based non-governmental organisation ACT Alliance “Nine regions of Tanzania, namely Arusha, Manyara, Kilimanjaro, Shinyanga, Dodoma, Iringa, Mwanza, Mara and Tabora, are caught up in chronic and transitory food insecurity due to poor or no harvests,” Seth writes …..

“I am at Dodoma this time,trying to go in the villages to see and evaluate the famine effect to the poorest and disable communities,and trying to rescue just few of them,because so many people are becoming very weak,sick and dying.”

We are looking at sending a truck load of maize to the village – and we need your help – if 1000 people gave £4 each we would be able to send roughly 100 sacks of maize to Mnase village. We so appreciate your help – Asante sana.

Martin’s musical mystery tour – 5

By | Music that inspires | No Comments

Martin’s musical mystery tour – We are out in San Diego and so this month’s selection is from another Spanish speaking country – Mexico. One of the radio stations I always look for when travelling in the car in southern California is the Mexican music stations. This music just makes me smile – pure fun. The mariachi orchestra is composed of at least two violins, two trumpets, a Spanish guitar, and two other types of guitars – the vilhuela and guitarron. Here is an amazing Mexican folk ensemble the Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, who have been together in various formats since 1897 – must be some sort of record!

News from Tanzania

By | Tanzania | 2 Comments

2nd download 030Seth writes from Tanzania – ” The food Problem is covering the whole Dodoma Villages and town,Central Region and More other parts of the Country,No rain this time and the food prices especially maize still shooting higher,last time as I shared to you 1 sack of maize was 100,000.TSH from 40,000 TSH,But now is 130,000 SHS, the situation is very bad.”

You can help by buying their music –

Korean percussion

By | Drums | No Comments

Here is a very passionate drum group from Korea. Kim Duk Soo playing the hourglass drum in this video was the founder of this genre of traditional Korean drumming called Samul nori (Samul meaning four objects and nori meaning to play). The group consists of the Kkwaenggwari (a small gong) a Jing (a larger gong) the Janggu (an hourglass-shaped drum) and a Buk (a barrel drum similar to the bass drum).

El Día de Reyes

By | Europe | No Comments

We have just celebrated the Spanish equivalent to Christmas Day known as the 3 Kings Day which is held on Jan 6th. The night before, 3 Kings upon floats and bands take to the streets throwing sweets to children and families lining the pavements. There is an old tradition in rural areas that children will leave their shoes outside filled with straw and carrots, hoping that the 3 Kings (especially Baltazar who rides a donkey and is believed to be the gift giver) will visit during the night and leave them gifts for the morning.