Robert Browning, New York City’s most prolific producer of World Music events shares his personal recordings, highlights from his concerts from over the last 30 years.
We’ll hear rare recordings from Abida Parveen of Pakistan, Dimi Mint Abba from Mauritania, Noura Mint Seymali of Mauritania, Said Shanbehzadeh-bagpipe from Bushear Iran a; Village group from Luristan (South West Iran), Hassan Hakmoun of Morocco, Farid Ayaz, Abu Muhammad & Brothers Qawwal from Pakistan and a rare recording from India’s master of the Rudra Veena, Ustad Asad Ali Khan.
Robert Browning has produced over 1,500 concerts of World Music, including the Musical World of Islam (1993-94, 1995-96) concert series that featured artists such as Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (Pakistan), Simon Shaheen (Palestine), Sabah Fakhri (Syria), Necdet Yasar (Turkey), Alim Qasimov (Azerbaijan), the Master Musicians of Jajouka (Morocco), Shahram Nazeri (Iran) and Dimi Mint Abba (Mauritania). The Festival of Greek Music & Dance (2000-2005) which included rembetika music as well as regional styles from throughout mainland Greece and the islands; and the New York Flamenco Festival(2001 – 2011), which featured many of Spain’s greatest musicians and dancers. Artists from Africa and the African diaspora played a major role in his concerts and included Kandia Kouyate, Oumou Sangare and Toumani Diabate (Mali). Ladysmith Black Mambaso (South Africa), Les Ballets Africains (Guinea) and Los Munequitos de Matanzas (Cuba) and the Skatalites (Jamaica).
His Festival of India featured some of India’s must celebrated classical artists, including Lalgudi Jayraman, Maharajapuram Santhanam, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Shivkumar Sharma, and Zakir Hussain. The festival continued the following year with a concert at Carnegie Hall with some of the finest Rajasthani folk musicians opening for the celebrated sitarist Nikhil Banerjee.
The world of music has just lost the Gentle Giant, Yusef Lateef. WKCR will celebrate his life by playing his music for 33 hours from the stroke of midnight as January 1, 2014. His bravery and expansive musical vision is unmatched. I was lucky enough to interview Dr. Lateef in March of 2013, his longtime collaborator Adam Rudolph joined the conversation.
This episode came from a WKCR broadcast a year after the passing of the master drummer Frisner Augustin whoose Troupe Makandal has brought Vodou ceremonial drumming to the world.
It features a recent live performance from La Troupe Makandal recorded at the Afro-Roots Series at the Space at 9 Bleecker. Guests Morgan Zwerlein from Troupe Makandal and producer of the Afro-Roots series and good friend, Kevin Nathaniel joined me to explain about the man and the magic of Vodou drumming.
Mr. Augustin had an encyclopedic knowledge of the rhythms of vodou (the word is the Haitian Creole spelling of voodoo), in which more than 100 spirits are represented and summoned, each by a distinctive rhythm…
La Troupe Makandal has performed for both Haitian and world-music audiences. When it brought abridged vodou ceremonies to public stages, the rhythms were so traditional and intense that unplanned spiritual possessions sometimes took place in secular spaces. The troupe also performs choreographed programs devoted to Haitian history and culture. It has made four albums of traditional Afro-Haitian music: “A Trip to Vodou,” “Èzili,” “The Drums of Vodou” and “Prepare.”
Dave Eggar is a cello virtuoso and one of our most frequent guests at WKCR – I am posting this short podcast up now because he’ll be performing live today 6-9pm on May 2, 2012! A prodigy, he first played with Metropolitan Opera at the age of 7. He is not limited by genres, his latest album, Kingston Morning features legend of bluegrass Ralph Stanley, and reggae legends Sly and Robbie and Luciano. He’s performed and recorded across the spectrum from Beyonce to Bon Jovi to Lucinda Williams to Michael Brecker. This sweet version of “Bird Cage” capped off an extended jam at WKCR.
This group features Tom Perozzi on Bass and Chuck Palmer on drums.
Here’s video of another performance of Dave and the Quartet on our show.
Jahkey B., a musician and producer, has dedicated over a decade of his life to recording the music of Shamans of the Amazon. He came to WKCR recently with many of these recordings, some which have never been officially released. We’ll hear music from Don Solon Tello, Don Guillermo Ojanama and Jose Campos (aka Don Evangelino Murayay) curanderos of a lineage of traditional healing that spans hundreds of years. You can learn more about Jahkey and the albums at http://mamancuna.com/sounds/
Later in part 2 of this podcast – we’ll be joined by 2 musicians who perform live on the same show, Grammy Award winner Jeff Peterson of Hawaii and violinist Frederika Krier. Jeff and Jahkey will talk about the relationship between the roots music of Hawaii and the Amazonian sounds – there’s quite a connection.