June 19, 2017

Program June 21, 2017

Mali's Oumou Sangare (pictured above), the Wassoulou Songbird, is probably the most influential African female musical artist today.

She's a feminist activist fighting against polygamy, arranged marriage and other traditions that cement women's place on the bottom rung of African society.  She's a successful business person with interests in the agriculture, tourism and automobile industries.  You could say that she actually is what Beyonce pretends to be.

Sangare's new album Mogoya, the eighth in her 30-year recording career, was released on May 19.  This week on Global A Go-Go, you'll hear a brief survey of Oumou Sangare's musical career, from her 1989 debut Moussolou to today.

Also this week: British and Irish folk-rock, qawwali meets jazz and rock, and some stunning new Afrobeat from Switzerland.

June 18, 2017

Charts June 18, 2017

WRIR's World Music Top Ten
1 Lobo Marino | The Mulberry House | self-released
2 Meklit | When The People Move The Music Moves Too | Six Degrees
3 Professor Wouassa | Grow Yes Yes! | Matasuna
4 Afous D'Afous | Tenere | Sahelsound
5 Alemayehu Eshete | "Alteleyeshegnem" / "Temar Ledje" | Philophon
6 Dona Onete | Banzeiro | Mais Um Discos
7 Vieux Farka Toure | Samba | Six Degrees
8 Ondatropica | Baile Bucanero | Soundway
9 Ani Cordero | Querido Mundo | self-released
10 Hard Proof | Stinger | Modern Outsider

Afous D'Afous | Tenere

ARTIST: Afous D’Afous
TITLE: Tenere
LABEL: Sahelsound
Most of the Saharan desert blues I get to hear is produced with a first-world audience in mind.

Meklit | When The People Move The Music Moves Too

ARTIST: Meklit
TITLE: When The People Move The Music Moves Too
LABEL: Six Degrees
You can’t pin Meklit Hadero down. Born in Ethiopia, educated at Yale, living in Oakland, she lectures around the world as a TED Senior Fellow and she co-founded The Nile Project.

Professor Wouassa | Grow Yes Yes!

ARTIST: Professor Wouassa
TITLE: Grow Yes Yes!
LABEL: Matasuna
An American or European Afrobeat band today is working in a crowded space: the genre has become so popular you need a gimmick or special talent to stand out from the crowd.

June 13, 2017

Program June 14, 2017

Meklit Hadero (pictured above) is an Ethiopia-born, San Francisco-based singer-songwriter whose first three albums highlighted the folk, jazz and rock sides of her personality.  On her new release When The People Move The Music Moves Too (due on June 23), Meklit musically embraces her Ethiopian identity, to stunning effect.  You'll hear a track from it on this week's edition of Global A Go-Go.

Also this week: cool and hot sounds from Brazil; the most celebrated young desert blues band within the Tuareg community; and Global A Go-Go's tribute to Adam West (seriously).

June 11, 2017

Charts June 11, 2017

WRIR's World Music Top Ten
1 Juana Molina | Halo | Crammed
2 various artists | Pop Makossa: The Invasive Dance Beat Of Cameroon 1976-1984 | Analog Africa
3 Fruko Y Sus Tesos | Tesura | Vampisoul
4 various artists | Uzelli Psychedelic Anadolu | Uzelli
5 Nina Miranda | Freedom Of Movement | Six Degrees
6 Oma Souleyman | To Syria, With Love | Mad Decent
7 Dona Onete | Banzeiro | Mais Um Discos
8 Mamadou Kelly | Politiki | Clermont Music
9 Tamikrest | Kidal | Glitterbeat
10 Girma Beyene & Akale Wube | Ethiopiques 30: Mistakes On Purpose | Buda Musique

June 6, 2017

Program June 7, 2017

Mariachi, which developed in Mexico's Jalisco state in the 1700s, is now a worldwide musical phenomenon.  Even the United Nations is in on the action: UNESCO named mariachi an Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2011.

This week on Global A Go-Go, you'll hear what some contemporary musicians are doing with this venerable form: New York's first all-female mariachi band (Flor De Toloache, pictured above), the world's first and only heavy metal mariachi band, a punk band that moonlights as mariachis, and more.

Also this week: more blues from Mali, a Congolese non-stop classic by Sam Mangwana, and Turkish Gastarbeiter folk-rock.

June 5, 2017

Charts June 4, 2017

WRIR's World Music Top Ten
1 Omar Souleyman | To Syria, With Love | Mad Decent
2 Juana Molina | Halo | Crammed
3 Alemayehu Eshete | "Alteleyeshegnem" / "Temar Ledje" | Philophon
4 Rafiki Jazz | Har Sam Sahara | Riverboat
5 Lobo Marino | The Mulberry House | self-released
6 The Nile Project | Jinja | self-released
7 Ondatropica | Baile Bucanero | Soundway
8 Meta & The Cornerstones | Hira | Metarize
9 Girma Beyene & Akale Wube | Ethiopiques 30: Mistakes On Purpose | Buda Musique
10 Afro-Zen Allstars | Greatest Hits | self-released

May 30, 2017

Alemayehu Eshete | Philophon single

ARTIST: Alemayehu Eshete
TITLE: “Alteleyeshegnem” / “Temar Ledje”
LABEL: Philophon
Worldwide appreciation of the brilliant music made in Ethiopia in the 1960s and 70s got its first traction in 1997 from Francis Falceto’s Ethiopiques reissue series.

Rafiki Jazz | Har Dam Sahara

ARTIST: Rafiki Jazz
TITLE: Har Dam Sahara
LABEL: Riverboat
Rafiki Jazz is an octet from Sheffield, England with a decidedly global outlook: members hail from six countries on four continents. You won’t find a lot of bands that feature oud, kora, steelpan, tabla and berimbau.

Omar Souleyman | To Syria, With Love

ARTIST: Omar Souleyman
TITLE: To Syria, With Love
LABEL: Mad Decent
Electronic dabke singer Omar Souleyman is back with his third studio album in four years. This is his ninth full-length USA-European release since 2007, not to mention the over 500 cassettes on the market in Syria.

Program May 31, 2017

Not a lot of bands are together through five decades.  Even fewer take a 14-year break, then come back sounding as good as when they started.  And ones that lay off for an additional 10 years, then make a second triumphant return?  Now we're down to only one band: Senegal's Orchestra Baobab (pictured above).

The superstars of salsa Senegalais are back -- their new album A Tribute To Ndiouga Dieng was released last month, and they're touring Europe again this summer.  It's a perfect time for a Baobab retrospective: four tracks from four different decades, this week on Global A Go-Go.

Also this week: new albums by Rafiki Jazz and Omar Souleyman, veteran Ethiopian singers Alemayehu Eshete and Girma Beyene are back, and Colombian fandango meets Trinidadian calypso.

May 28, 2017

Charts May 28, 2017

WRIR's World Music Top Ten
1 Juana Molina | Halo | Crammed
2 various artists | Pop Makossa: The Invasive Dance Beat Of Cameroon 1976-1984 | Analog Africa
3 Fruko Y Sus Tesos | Tesura | Vampisoul
4 Oumou Sangare | Mogoya | No Format
5 Dona Onete | Banzeiro | Mais Um Discos
6 Mamadou Kelly | Politiki | Clermont Music
7 Vieux Farka Toure | Samba | Six Degrees
8 Orquesta El Macabeo | La Maldicion Del Timbal | Peace & Rhythm
9 various artists | Synthesize The Soul: Astro-Atlantic Hypnotica From The Cape Verde Islands 1973-1988 | Ostinato
10 Aurelio | Darandi | Real World

May 22, 2017

Program May 24, 2017

It's Ska Week in central Virginia!  The SuperNova International Ska Festival takes over the Fredericksburg Fairgrounds this weekend, May 27 & 28 from noon to 11:30 PM.

SuperNova is bringing artists from around the world (Derrick Morgan and Monty Neysmith from Jamaica, The Skints from England), the country (LA's The Aggrolites, NYC's The Toasters) and the region (DC's The Pietasters and Eastern Standard Time, and Murphy's Kids from right here in Richmond) to your backyard.

Sean Kennedy joins me in the studio this week to spin some of the acts he'll be checking out at SuperNova this year.  We'll also be giving away a pair of tickets to see The Skints, Mighty Joshua and Buddha Council at the Broadberry Saturday night.  And I'll play progressive salsa and vintage Afro-disco to get you warmed up for our ska-labration.