Sylvain Leroux teaches music literacy in Guinea, West Africa, Podcast 121

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MUL029_502Back from his successful mission to start teaching music literacy in Guinea, Sylvain Leroux returns to NYC Radio Live to share the recordings he made with the children out there and tell us of his experience.  The episode starts with a a spontaneous live performance from Sylvain Leroux accompanied by our host.

Sylvain will be producing an event this week in celebration of this effort.

CD release / film premiere / performance / photo & flute exhibition

Judson Memorial Church
7pm, Thursday, November 20, 2014
Manhattan at 55 Washington Square South & Thompson Street
Admission is free.

 

Hatim Belyamani of remix ←→ culture brings recordings from Morocco – Podcast 120

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This podcast we were joined by Hatim Belyamani, executive director of remix ←→ culture.  Hatim has been making incredible field recordings throughout Morocco in remote locations.  (Check out the picture below).  He will share these amazing recordings with the WKCR audience and conclude with a live remix of his own.

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One location in Morocco!


 remix ←→ culture is a nonprofit artist collective committed to growing a conversation between traditional music(ians) and digital remix art(ists). They love folk music traditions that have been evolving for a long time, and so and go find them in remote corners of the world.  They make high quality audio and video recordings of their live performances, using several microphones and cameras, each on different instruments.  This allows them not only to make beautiful videos of the original performance, but also to then create vide
o remixes of the separate instruments, and bring them to the public via participatory remix experiences.

Brooklyn Raga Massive All-Stars Perform Terry Riley’s “In C” Podcast- 119

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The Brooklyn Raga Massive All-Stars perform a live, in-studio performance of Terry Riley’s masterpiece, “In C” live on the airwaves of WKCR-FM NY. Riley was deeply influenced by his studies of Hindustani vocal music but according to the composer himself, as far as he knows, the Massive is the only group that performs  “In C” with an ensemble of mostly Indian instruments. The group includes  sitars, tablas, sarods, bansuri, vocals, cello, guitars, vibes, dilruba, and more.

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We packed 16 musicians into the tiny live room at WKCR!

Led by Neel Murgai, on sitar, the group’s lineup for this broadcast is:

Neel Murgai, sitar
Camila Celin, sarod
Eric Fraser, bansuri
Sameer Gupta, tabla
Ehren Hanson, tabla
Andrew Shantz, harmonium, vocals
Dawood Kringle, dilruba
David Ellenbogen, guitar
Michael Gam, bass
Dana Leong, cello
Christian VerHalen, guitar
Vin Scialla, vibes
Joel Harrison, guitar
Timothy Hill, vocals
Alan Rigoletto, guitar
Timothy Hill, vocals
Rima Fand, violin

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The BRM-All Stars Performing “In C” at Art Cafe

Brooklyn Raga Massive began in the Fall of 2011 as a cooperative alliance between several Indian Classical Musicians in the Brooklyn, NYC area. Brooklyn Raga Massive is not a band, and it is not an exclusive club with members. The Massive is a platform for all lovers of Raga music, listeners and practitioners, to get closer to the pulse of NYCs live Raga music scene. The Brooklyn Raga Massive is managed by artists, and is meant to help bring the community of Raga lovers together. The Massive’s collaborative approach towards unifying and building the scene of Raga music in NYC leads its members towards each other, as well as provides the spark for the Brooklyn Raga Massive events and gatherings. The Massive is dedicated to presenting and representing Indian Classical Music in all its diversity of today.

The Brooklyn Raga Massive has a weekly residency at the “Art Cafe”- 884-886 Pacific St., Brooklyn, New York 11238.  Every Wednesday night from 8pm-11pm $5-10 admission

Ba-ere Yotere Live on the African Gyil with Valerie Naranjo, Gyil; and Barry Olsen, percussion – Podcast 118

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Ba-Ere Yotere a master of the African Gyil performs live with great percussionists Valerie Naranjo  (also on Gyil)  and Barry Olsen.   We hung out at Valeries house and recorded a few songs as well as talking to Ba-Ere about his early days with a man I searched for but never found, the great Kakraba Lobi.

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Valerie Naranjo

 

At home with Jean-Michel Pilc – Podcast 117

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This was  pure joy: hanging out with the master jazz pianist, Jean-Michel Pilc, in his Brooklyn home.  Speaking about music,  he illustrated his ideas by playing compositions, improvisations and even a Chopin waltz.

We recorded this session for WKCR’s musician show to be broadcast in New York City, Wednesday Oct 22nd at 6pm on 89.9 FM-NY and stream at www.wkcr.org.   Later in that broadcast, guitarist Coyote Anderson will perform live with his quartet.

Jean Michel Pilc has been described as a “musical genius” by the Washington Post and “dazzlingly inventive” by the New York Times, he’s worked with the greatest musicians in the world from Roy Haynes to Harry Belafonte with whom he served as musical director.

Coyote Anderson has quickly become regarded as one of the most promising up-and-coming artists in New York, both as a guitarist and a composer. As a member of the BMI Jazz Composer’s Workshop he has honed his compositional & arranging voice, which has culminated into a recording project and the formation of The Coyote Anderson Quartet.

Coyote Anderson: Guitar & Compositions

Corina Hernandez: Vocals & Harmonizer

Carl Limbacher: Bass

Diego Maldonado: Drum

Shubhangi Sakhalkar – Live at Brooklyn Raga Massive Podcast 116

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Shubhangi Sakhalkar-Vocal

Samit Banik – Tabla

Rohan Prabhudesai – Harmonium

Samita Sinha – Tanpura and Vocal Support

August 27th 2014.

Another amazing night at the Art Cafe.  Shunbhangi Sakhalkar began the evening with this ethereal performance of Rag Bihag

Shubhangi Sakhalkar brings a brilliant pedigree to her music. After her early tutelage with Smt. Kunda Vaishampayan, she spent several years learning from the renowned artistes Dr. Prabha Atre and Smt. Padma Talwalkar.
In addition, Shubhangi has brought her own ardent riyaaz, creative imagination, and keen intellect to bear upon her art. She has developed a dynamic yet thoughtful vocal style that remains rooted in tradition while being uniquely her own. Besides accompanying her guru in concerts all over the country, she has performed in several musical circles in cities in India including Mumbai and Pune.

After moving to the United States in 1992, Shubhangi has captivated music aficionados with numerous charismatic concerts from coast to coast. Some of the cities where she has performed are Atlanta, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Phoenix, San Jose, and Los Angeles. Some of her more prestigious concerts include a SPICMACAY concert at U.C. Davis, a concert hosted by Lata Mangeshkar Foundation U.S.A. where she was accompanied by Ustad Tari Khan, and Basant Bahar’s first annual music festival where she was accompanied by Pt. Swapan Chowdhari and Pt. Ramesh Mishra. Her energetic yet melodious singing has met with enthusiastic appreciation and has created many fans in several U.S. cities.

A gold medallist with an M.A. degree in Hindustani classical music, Shubhangi believes in sharing her knowledge and raising awareness about Indian Classical music. She is recognized as one of the finest artistes and teachers in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is an inspiring mentor to many students,
some of who have begun to give performances of their own.

 

brm-logo-copy-1Brooklyn Raga Massive, an artist collective dedicated to the Indian Classical Musicians of Brooklyn hosts weekly concerts followed by jam sessions every Wednesday at 8pm  at Art Cafe, 
884 Pacific st at Underhill, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn

Art Cafe is a bar and venue connected to The Village @ Gureje, an arts center and creative community that brings together artists, teachers and leaders from Brooklyn and beyond.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kora Master, Foday Musa Suso, Performs Live! – Podcast 115

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I feel like this recording is as good anything I’ve produced for radio.

This podcast is a live performance from Kora legend Foday Musa Suso.   Suso is most known in the West from his collaborations with Phillip Glass, Herbie Hancock, Paul Simon, Pharaoh Sanders, Jack DeJohnette and countless others.

 Foday Musa Suso is an internationally recognized musician and a Mandingo griot from the West African nation of Gambia. Griots are the oral historians and musicians of the Mandingo people, who live in several West African nations. Griots are a living library for the community, providing history, entertainment, and wisdom while playing and singing their songs. The history of empires and kingdoms, tribal conflicts, cultural heroes, and family lineage are all part of a griot’s traditional repertoire. It is an extensive verbal and musical heritage that can only be passed down within a griot family.

Foday is a direct descendent of Jali Madi Wlen Suso, the griot who invented the kora over four centuries ago. Foday spent his childhood in a traditional Gambian village, in a household filled with kora music. He began to play his father’s kora even before he could hold the instrument on his own. Though his father was a master kora player, in griot tradition a father does not teach his own children the instrument. So from age 9-18, Foday studied music and history under master kora player Sekou Suso in the village of Pasamasi, Wuli District.–

After many years of rigorous study, in 1974 Foday spent 3 years teaching the kora at the Institute of African Studies at the University of Legon, Ghana. In 1977, he moved to Chicago and became the first kora player to establish himself in the United States. He formed The Mandingo Griot Society with 3 American musicians, playing a fusion of traditional and jazz that is now known as “world music”. Since 1977, he has performed as a soloist and with other musicians throughout Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America. Interested in both traditional and cutting-edge music, he has also written many original compositions, toured and recorded with many prominent musicians. In addition to his virtuosic kora playing and singing, Foday Musa Suso is very skilled in playing traditional West African drums, as well as many other instruments.

Raja Kassis, Human Being Podcast 114

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db882c3277db27a3-1897940_10152332007126979_1273539798_n-e14083881846341-1After a smoking live set last night from Foday Musa Suso, the great guitarist Raja Kassis came into WKCR with his smokin’ new album Human Being.  Raja is known for his work with Blitz the Ambassador, Damian Marley, Angelique Kidjo, Seun Kuti, Antibalas and many others.

We conclude the broadcast with  a track from Edwin Quirk’s new  Fractal Caravan album.

 

Samarth Nagarkar, Arun Ramamurthy and Sameer Gupta Live at Brooklyn Raga Massive Podcast 113

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10014569_10152116563073382_1980766578_n Samarth Nagarkar, Arun Ramamurthy and Sameer Gupta – Live! Brooklyn Raga Massive at Art Cafe 9/2014

Last Wednesday was another legendary evening at Art Cafe.  First,  virtuosos Andrew Mendelson and Ehren Hanson on sitar and tabla tore it up.  Then sitar maestro Pt. Krishna Bhatt  and San Francisco based saxophonist George Brooks wowed the crowd with Michael Gam on bass, Sameer Gupta on drums and Jay Gandhi on bansuri.  Jaws were dropping at the level of musical conversation these great players were exchanging, a vocabularly from raga to Coltrane.   I hope to share this if I can get the recording close enough to honor the music.  Finally the evening was capped off with this performance from the Godfather of the Brooklyn Raga music scene, Samarth Nagarkar who was joined by Arun Ramamurthy on violin and Sameer Gupta on tabla.   It was an electrifying evening.

brm-logo-copy-1Brooklyn Raga Massive, an artist collective dedicated to the Indian Classical Musicians of Brooklyn hosts weekly concerts followed by jam sessions every Wednesday at 8pm  at Art Cafe, 
884 Pacific st at Underhill, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn

Art Cafe is a bar and venue connected to The Village @ Gureje, an arts center and creative community that brings together artists, teachers and leaders from Brooklyn and beyond.

 

 

T.H. Subash Chandran’s Rhythms of India live from Brooklyn Raga Massive @ Art Cafe – Podcast # 112

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Live! Brooklyn Raga Massive Presents:  T.H. Subash Chandran’s Rhythms of India, at Art Cafe

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Rhythms of India – led by T.H. Subash Chandran

T.H. Subash Chandran – ghatam/konnakkol

Akshay Anantapadmanbhan – mridangam

Arun Ramamurthy – violin

Abhik Mukherjee – sitar

Max ZT – hammered dulcimer

Sri T H Subash Chandran is legendary figure in the world of percussion. He is a master of multiple Carnatic percussion instruments including Mridangam (Barrel Shaped Drum), Ghatam (Claypot), Kanjira (South Indian Frame Drum), Morsing (Jaws Harp) and Konnakkol (Vocal Percussion).  His compositions were performed by an ensemble of some of Brooklyn Raga Massive’s finest musicians.

Sri T H Subash Chandran has developed international repute through his spellbinding performances at the United Nations, the Festivals of India in USA, Russia, Switzerland, Japan and with the various philharmonics such as, NY Philharmonic with conductor Mr Zubin Mehta, Norwegian Philharmonic, Oslo Philharmonic with renowned violinist Dr L Subramaniam.   Subash Chandran has shared stages with all time greats Yehudhi Menuhin, Stephen Grapheli, renowned drummers Tony Williams, Max Roach and Indian great artists Smt M S Subbulakshmi, Dr Bala Murali Krishna, Dr L Subramaniam, U Srinivas and others.

brm-logo-copy-1Brooklyn Raga Massive, an artist collective dedicated to the Indian Classical Musicians of Brooklyn hosts weekly concerts followed by jam sessions every Wednesday at 8pm  at Art Cafe, 
884 Pacific st at Underhill, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn

Art Cafe is a bar and venue connected to The Village @ Gureje, an arts center and creative community that brings together artists, teachers and leaders from Brooklyn and beyond.

 

 

Kane Mathis (Kora) and Brandon Terzic (Oud and Ngoni) Live! – Podcast 111

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Kane Mathis and Brandon Terzic performed live sets of incredible beauty of the NYC radio airwaves.  First Kane Mathis played solo  (on the 21-string Mandinka Harp) and then he was joined by Brandon on the Oud and later the Ngoni.

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Kane began taking trips to The Gambia, West Africa in 1997 and has continued rigorous study of the Mandinka Kora. Over the past ten years his performances have earned him recognition by the Gambian president, The Gambian minister of culture, and both national television and radio of The Gambia.

Kane’s primary kora teachers are Malamini Jobarteh of Brikama, The Gambia and Moriba Kouyate of The Gambia. The Jobarteh family remain one of The Gambia’s most important musical legacies. Tata Din din Jobarteh, Pa Bobo Jobarteh, and Siffai Jobarteh are the families current most visible exponents touring the world.

Brandon Terzic has performed in the states and Internationally, traveled to Morocco, Senegal and Egypt studying music, and playing with many incredible Musicians, amongst them Tomchess, Matt Kilmer, Matt Darriau, Rufus Cappodocia, Shane Shanahan, Luke Notary, Hassan Houkmoun, Peter Slavov, John Shannon, Gilad Dobrecky, Mal Stein, George Stathos, Sylvain Leroix, Tom Rossi, Max ZT and many many more. He currently teaches and performs in his band Xalam Project amongst other projects.

Both Kane and Brandon also perform on the Oud. 

 

 

 

 

Finding Fela! Femi Kuti and friends remember Fela Kuti – Podcast 110

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Fela used music as a weapon against injustice. He was beaten, arrested over 200 times, married 27 women and was buried in a glass coffin with a spliff in his hand. We’re still trying to get a handle on who he was and what he means. In this podcast we’ll be talking with his son Femi Kuti, Alex Gibney, Academy Award winning director of the new documentary “Finding Fela,” his friend and manager Rikki Stein and producer Stephen Handel. 

The Hills and The Rivers and Cousin Boneless Street Folk Music -Podcast 109

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The Hills and The Rivers and  Cousin Boneless bands perform Street Folk Music.images-1

The Hills and The Rivers

This band formed when Isaac Hill and his sister Heidi began recording an album of Isaac’s new songs. Gathering their street musician friends together they formed a band that became bigger than the initial project.

Cousin Boneless

Solo acoustic acts Average Joey and Crisp Lake went on tour together, and eventually joined forces. Cousin Boneless plays Spooky Folk Punk with a revolving door of other members.

They’re trying to raise funds in the next week or so to buy a van to more efficiently tour.  If you’d like to support them, check out their indiegogo campaign.

 

Noura Mint Seymali live with Jay Gandhi, Jeiche Ould Chighaly and Ehren Hanson – Podcast 108

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Podcast DownloadNoura Mint Seymali and Jeiche Ould ChighalyFresh from the inspiration of Ragas Live Festival, we tried our hand at a novel combination of styles an instruments.  Mauritania’s greatest singer, Noura Mint Seymali and her husband/guitarist, Jeiche Ould Chighaly performed live in studio with two Brooklyn-based Hindustani musicians Jay Gandhi (bansuri flute) and Ehren Hanson (Tabla).  They met at the ASAMAAN Festival of Music & Astronomy in the Gorée Island – Dakar, Sénégal on April 2013 but had never performed together until this day.

We also got a chance to share a track from Noura’s burning new album Tzenni.

Noura Mint Seymali is a nationally beloved star and one of Mauritania’s foremost musical emissaries.  Born into a prominent line of Moorish griot, Noura began her career at age 13 as a supporting vocalist with her step-mother, the legendary Dimi Mint Abba.  Trained in instrumental technique by her grandmother, Mounina, Noura mastered the ardine, a 9-string harp reserved only for women.  Seymali Ould Ahmed Vall, Noura’s father and namesake, sparked her compositional instincts, himself a seminal scholar figure in Mauritanian music; studying Arab classical music in Iraq, devising the first system for Moorish melodic notation, adapting the national anthem, and composing many works popularized by his wife, Dimi.  Reared in this transitive culture where sounds from across the Sahara, the Magreb, and West Africa coalesce, Noura Mint Seymali currently drives the legacy forward as one of Mauritania’s most adventurous young artists.

Fueled by the exploratory sound of her husband Jeiche Ould Chighaly’s emotive psych guitar lines, Noura and Jeiche formed their first “fusion” band in 2004.  Jeiche, a master of the tidinit (aka. ngoni, xalam), brings the force of yet another important line of Moorish griot to bear, translating the tidinit’s intricate phrasing to a modified electric guitar with heroic effect.  His unique sound, mirroring vocal lines and then refracting their melodies into the either, was born out of years presiding over wedding ceremonies, directing the dance often as the sole melodic instrument.  In addition to his work with Noura, Jeiche remains one of Nouakchott’s most sought after guitarists for traditional ceremonies.

After two albums – Tarabe (2006) & El Howl (2010) – released locally in Mauritania and years of experimentation adapting Moorish music to various pop formations, Noura Mint Seymali’s current band is a concise return to the roots, a light formation led by the “azawan,” a word in Hassaniya that refers to the collective ensemble of traditional instruments; the ardine, tidinit, guitar.  Backed by a declarative, funk-speaking rhythm section, composed of Ousmane Touré (bass) and Matthew Tinari (drums), the band has made a formidable debut on the international stage, releasing two EPs – Azawan (2012) & Azawan II (2013) – and touring widely.  The band’s first full-length album for the international market – TZENNI –  is set for release via Gliiterbeat Records on June 20, 2014 and to be followed by an extensive North American tour.

Though performances at events like globalFEST (USA), Festival-au-Desert (Mali), Hayy Festival (Egypt), Jeux de Francophonie (France) and Festival Timitar (Morocco) and collaborations with artists like Tinariwen, Bassekou Kouyaté, and Baaba Maal, the band is actively exposing Mauritanian roots music to the world.  In a rare merger of cultural authority and experimental prowess, Noura Mint Seymali applies the ancient musical traditions of the griot with a savvy aesthetic engagement in our contemporary moment, emerging as a powerful voice at nexus of a changing Africa.

 

 

Samarth Nagarkar (vocal) Amod Dandawate (tabla) Arun Ramamurthy (violin) Ragas Live Festival 2014 – Podcast 107

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Samarth Nagarkar (vocal) Amod Dandawate (tabla)  and Arun Ramamurthy (violin) performed raga Kausi Kanada (Nayaki ang) from 11pm-midnight to conclude the 24 hour, Ragas Live Festival 2014.

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Samarth Nagarkar is acknowledged to be one of today’s foremost and prolific artists representing Hindustani classical music traditions. He is known for his eclectic, captivating performances reflecting extensive training and an artistic vision encompassing tradition and modernity in a rare balance.

 

After years of rigorous training under the celebrated performer and guru, Pt. Ulhas Kashalkar, he graduated as a Grade-A scholar of the ITC Sangeet Research Academy, Kolkata in 2009. Prior to this, he trained under the eminent late Pt. Dinkar Kaikini in Mumbai, following an inspired early initiation into music by Smt. Aditi Kaikini Upadhya in his hometown Bangalore. By virtue of intense and extensive guru-shishya parampara training Samarth’s performance repertoire encompasses styles, ragas and compositions of three prominent gharanas – Gwalior, Agra and Jaipur.

 

Samarth performs regularly in most reputed concert platforms and venues in India and the USA, as well as frequently features in television and radio programs across the world. Some of his recent concerts in the US include the Ali Akbar College of Music and Basant Bahar, CA, Chhandayan All Night Concert, New York, Woodstock 2012, and Universities of Stanford, Indiana, Penn State and UPenn, to name only a few. In India he recently performed at several top ranking music festivals and venues including the ITC Sangeet Sammelan, Kolkata, Saptak and D. U. Yuva Sangeetotsav, Bangalore, The National Centre for Performing Arts (NCPA), Mumbai and India Habitat Center, New Delhi, among others.

 

He is a recipient of prestigious national awards including the President’s award for the AIR competition in 2000, which also made him a graded artiste of the AIR. The Government of India awarded him a fellowship in 2009 for his research and documentation of the music of Gwalior gharana through the past century.

 

He has composed and continues to record music and soundtracks for international and cultural conventions and films. Samarth also authored his first book ‘Raag-Sageet’ published in 2013. He has two CDs/Albums titled ‘Pravah’ and ‘Pranali’ to his credit.

 

Former head of the K. K. Kapoor Sangeet Research Academy, Lucknow, Samarth has been conducting very successful and popular lecture demonstrations and music workshops across India and the USA. Samarth also spearheaded an Indian Music Choir.

 

Samarth currently divides him time between the US and India pursuing an active career as a leading performer, composer, teacher and author.