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3 New Russian Recordings You Should Hear

Posted November 27, 2015 by | 0 Comments

For this post-turkey day show, we’ll feature three great Russian works: a great new recording of Rachmaninov’s masterpiece, Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, then two Scriabin miniatures by the great Vladimir Horowitz and a popular new Ukrainian pianist, Valentina Lisitsa.
Rachmaninov represents the last era of great 19th century Russian romanticism. He followed in the footsteps of Tchaikovsky, Glazunov, and Rimsky Korsakov.  For a …

New Releases, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

10 Great New Fall Album Releases

Posted November 13, 2015 by | 1 Comment
Dengue Fever

It’s harvest time, and once again I have a ton of new music to share with you out there in the RP universe.
We’ll start with the current top new releases at KCRW: St. Germain‘s eponymous new album. It’s a brilliant bit of alchemy, bringing blues roots, African music, and house vibes together. Congratulations to Ludovic Navarre, the Frenchman behind it all.
Our favorite kiwi band, …

African, Interviews, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #127: The Kel Tamasheq Sounds of the Sahara

Posted October 10, 2015 by | 3 Comments
Nyka in the Zone

Back in the late 1960s and ’70s, when bootleg cassette tapes first began exchanging hands amongst the Tuareg ranks of Muammar el-Qaddafi, the early sounds of Tinariwen were sown across the desert sands of the Sahara. Singing songs of struggle and division, their guitar-driven modal grooves became a unifying call for independence for Kel Tamasheq fans scattered across Mali, Mauritania, Algeria, Niger, Libya and portions of Burkina Faso.
The words, Tuareg and Kel Tamasheq, are often …

Asia, Jazz, Latin, New Releases, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #126: What I’m Listening To

Posted October 2, 2015 by | 0 Comments

This week on Rhythm Planet, we’ll survey ten new releases that I am currently enjoying.
We begin with a Brazilian singer from São Paulo whose debut album is gorgeous. Catina DeLuna’s rendering of Lenine and Egberto Gismonti’s original song, “Lavadeira do Rio and Maracatu” is just sublime.
Our second song features French jazz pianist Baptiste Trotignon and the multi-talented polymath, Melody Gardot, as vocalist, singing in flawless French. (I cheated a bit …

Artist Spotlight, French, Jazz, Latin, Music History, Recollections & Rediscoveries, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #125: Musical Ambrosia, Part 1

Posted September 18, 2015 by | 1 Comment

Ambrosia is the nectar of the gods in Greek mythology. For me it’s a little more mundane: a fruit salad with mandarin oranges, pineapple, grapes, pecans, cherries, with a dash of whipped cream. I have added a splash of Cointreau to this beautiful mélange.
I heard the word in a different and incongruous way the other day, when I read an article in the …

African, Jazz, Latin, New Releases, Recollections & Rediscoveries, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #124: Hot Weekend Grooves

Posted September 11, 2015 by | 0 Comments

This week, I’m especially excited about the new releases that I’ve been sent. I’ve got tracks for you from around the globe and back, which I’ll feature along with a few recent rediscoveries.
Let’s begin with a nice melding of traditional African and western classical music. It’s the music of the 21-string harp-lute kora, played by Malian virtuoso Ballaké Sissoko, in collaboration with French cellist, Vincent Ségal. Sissoko is descended from …

African, Cape Verde, Jazz, Latin, New Releases, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #123: Weekend World Groove

Posted September 4, 2015 by | 0 Comments

This week on Rhythm Planet, I’ve culled and curated exciting new releases from around the world expressly for your weekend listening enjoyment.
We start with a great new album by Los Angeles-based Mamak Khadem. From beginning to end, The Road is an incredible musical journey to her homeland of Iran and the distant lands of her travels, including Serbia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Greece, and Andalusian Spain. It’s literally a musical travelogue …

Classical, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #122: Adagios, Art of the Sublime

Posted August 28, 2015 by | 1 Comment
Johannes Brahms

The term ‘adagio‘ means slowly in Italian, the language from which most of our musical terminology comes from. As such, adagios usually designates a slow movement bookended by movements that are faster in tempo, like scherzos or allegros. I often consider the lilting adagio movements to be the most beautiful and moving parts of classical works.
We begin with the Italian Baroque composer, Tomaso Albinoni (b. 1671–1751), and his Adagio in G …

Jazz, Latin, Performances & Events, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #121: Cubana Be, Cubana Bop, The Return of Bebop at MOLAA—Next Saturday, Aug29

Posted August 21, 2015 by | 0 Comments

When Afro-Cuban drummer Chano Pozo (b. 1915–1948) met jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie (b. 1917–1993) in New York City, it was a meeting of two legends with musically explosive results. At the time, bebop was still new and revolutionary, but Chano’s fiery drumming served as a catalyst that furthered its dynamism. It was a short-lived partnership between the two, though, with only a few records …

Artist Spotlight, New Releases, Rhythm Planet Music Show »

Show #120: New August Mix

Posted August 14, 2015 by | 0 Comments

This week on Rhythm Planet, I’ve got ten superb new albums to share with you.
We begin with a lovely, heartfelt version of the John Lennon classic, “Imagine,” sung by Filipina-American jazz-world vocalist, Charmaine Clamor. It’s a track from her new album of songs that were inspired by a Filipino festival she once attended that she told me “brought out the best in people.” Her …

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