May 20, 2018

Charts May 20, 2018

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 YENI NOSTALJI | Yeni Nostalji | Ropeadope
2 LOS TEXMANIACS | Cruzando Borders | Smithsonian Folkways
3 NICKODEMUS | A Long Engagement | Wonderwheel
4 AFRICAN SCREAM CONTEST 2 | various artists | Analog Africa
6 ORQUESTA AKOKAN | Orquesta Akokan | Daptone
7 THORNATO | Back It Up [EP] | Wonderwheel
8 SONIDO GALLO NEGRO | Mambo Cosmico | Glitterbeat
9 CAMARAO | The Imaginary Soundtrack to a Brazilian Western Movie (1964-1974) | Analog Africa
10 EMPRESARIOS | Cambumbeo [EP] | Empresarios Musica

Bombino | Deran

ARTIST: Bombino
TITLE: Deran
LABEL: Partisan
Oumara “Bombino” Moctar is a Tamasheq guitarist and singer from Agadez, Niger. Of all the second generation of tichumaren (sometimes called “desert blues”) players he’s the one with the highest international profile, aided in part by his last two albums which were produced by Dan Auerbach (Black Keys) and David Longstreth (Dirty Projectors), respectively.

Nickodemus | A Long Engagement

ARTIST: Nickodemus
TITLE: A Long Engagement
LABEL: Wonderwheel
Nick DeSimone, aka Nickodemus, is an NYC-based producer and DJ best known for his Turntables On The Hudson club nights (now in their 20th worldwide season) and for founding Wonderwheel Records.

Los Texmaniacs | Cruzando Borders

ARTIST: Los Texmaniacs
TITLE: Cruzando Borders
LABEL: Smithsonian Folkways
Grammy award-winning Los Texmaniacs, who played the Richmond Folk Festival in 2010, are one of the most accomplished Tejano bands in the USA today.

Yeni Nostalji | Yeni Nostalji

ARTIST: Yeni Nostalji
TITLE: Yeni Nostalji
LABEL: Ropeadope
If you want to be an artist, you need to follow your obsessions down their rabbit hole. That’s what Christina Gleixner did four years ago when she decided she had to write and sing in Turkish, a language she didn’t speak.

May 15, 2018

Program May 16, 2018

It's been two years in the making, and Yeni Nostalji (pictured above)'s debut album has now been released by Ropeadope Records.  It's a beautiful thing; you'll hear a track from it this week on Global A Go-Go.  BTW, their record release show is this Friday at Gallery 5.

Also this week: welcome to Areito's Estudio 101 in Havana; Norteno and forro; Hailu Mergia's return to the scene; and new music for the dance floor by Empresarios, Nickodemus and Thornato.

May 13, 2018

Charts May 13, 2018

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 AFRICAN SCREAM CONTEST 2 | various artists | Analog Africa
3 ORQUESTA AKOKAN | Orquesta Akokan | Daptone
4 VIBRONICS | Woman On A Mission | SCOOPS
5 DJENEBA AND FOUSCO | Kayeba Khasso | Lusafrica
6 CESARIA EVORA | Carnaval De Mindelo [EP] | Lusafrica
7 CAMARAO | The Imaginary Soundtrack to a Brazilian Western Movie (1964-1974) | Analog Africa
8 LEVANTA POEIRA | various artists | Jazz & Milk
9 LITTLE AXE | London Blues | Echo Beach
10 JIMI TENOR | "Quantum Connection" / "My Mind Will Travel" [Single] | Philophon

May 9, 2018

Ali Farka Toure | The Source

ARTIST: Ali Farka Toure
TITLE: The Source
LABEL: World Circuit
For those of us who were just getting interested in African music around 1990, it’s impossible to overstate the impact of Ali Farka Toure.

May 8, 2018

Program May 9, 2018

Desert blues guitarist Mdou Moctar (pictured above) and his band return to Richmond Monday night at Strange Matter, on a killer triple bill with The Messthetics (Fugazi's rhythm section plus guitar shredder Anthony Pirog) and Time Is Fire (featuring Electric Cowbell's Jim Thomson on drums).

If you saw Mdou at the University of Richmond in October, you'll be back for more.  If you didn't, I'll play a track from his film Akounak Tedelat Taha Tazoughai ("Purple Rain" in Tamasheq) so you can hear what the buzz is about.

Also this week: I cannot give up rumba; what's new in reggae, spring 2018 edition; and the "101st century eucosmic raw soul" of Berlin's Philophon label.

May 6, 2018

Charts May 6, 2018

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 SIDI TOURE | Toubalbero | Thrill Jockey
2 EL HIJO DE LA CUMBIA | Genero Genero | Nacional
3 AFRICAN SCREAM CONTEST 2 | various artists | Analog Africa
4 ORQUESTA AKOKAN | Orquesta Akokan | Daptone
5 ALI FARKA TOURE | The Source | World Circuit
6 IMARHAN | Temet | City Slang
7 DJENEBA AND FOUSCO | Kayeba Khasso | Lusafrica
8 SONIDO GALLO NEGRO | Mambo Cosmico | Glitterbeat
9 CAMARAO | The Imaginary Soundtrack to a Brazilian Western Movie (1964-1974) | Analog Africa
10 SPANGLISH FLY | Ay Que Boogaloo! | Chaco World

May 1, 2018

Program May 2, 2018

First of all, I want to thank close to 600 WRIR listeners who donated $48,000 during the Spring 2018 Fund Drive.  For the second consecutive drive, we've set another all-time fundraising record.  Thank you so much for powering the Tower of Low Power!

You can still get in on the action: just visit, fill out the online form, and get the groovy Spring '18 T-shirt, magnet and bandana.  If you donated and haven't picked up your swag yet, please email -- we'll set up a time for you to come by and get your premiums.

Fund drive season is also new releases season.  And after two weeks of special programs during the Spring '18 Fund Drive, I've got a backlog of excellent recent material to share with you.

Global A Go-Go premieres this week will include a reissue of Ali Farka Toure's 1993 classic The Source, TootArd's desert blues from the Golan Heights, electro-cumbia by El Hijo De La Cumbia and E Arenas, Pinata Protest's Tejano punk rock (playing Richmond in June), and the brand-new single from Colombian legends Atercioplelados (pictured above).

Also this week: Latin soul and boogaloo, and Afrofunk chestnuts from the golden 70s.

April 29, 2018

Charts April 29, 2018

WRIR's NACC World Top Ten
1 HECTOR "COCO" BAREZ | El Laberinto Del Coco | Obi Musica
2 SIDI TOURE | Toubalbero | Thrill Jockey
3 IMARHAN | Temet | City Slang
4 CAMARAO | The Imaginary Soundtrack to a Brazilian Western Movie (1964-1974) | Analog Africa
5 PLENA LIBRE | Amores en el Camino | GN Musica
6 BALOJI | 137 Avenue Kaniama | Bella Union
7 NANCY VIEIRA | Manha Florida | Lusafrica
8 MELISSA LAVEAUX | Radyo Siwél | No Format
9 TOOTARD | Laissez Passer | Palmetto
10 GENERAL DEFAO | Irruption | JP Diamantino Production

April 24, 2018

African Scream Contest 2

ARTIST: various artists
TITLE: African Scream Contest 2
LABEL: Analog Africa
African Scream Contest, digging deep into the funk and psychedelic sounds of West Africa’s Benin and Togo, was Analog Africa’s third release and the one that put this intrepid label on the music map.

El Hijo De La Cumbia | Genero Genero

ARTIST: El Hijo De La Cumbia
TITLE: Genero Genero
LABEL: Nacional
Emiliano Gomez, who records and performs as El Hijo De La Cumbia, is an Argentine DJ and producer now living in Sweden who spins an urban, worldly musical mix based on Colombian cumbia.

April 23, 2018

Program April 25, 2018

WRIR's Spring 2018 Fund Drive wraps up on Wednesday April 25 at 11 PM.  Many of you have already donated during this drive or are monthly sustaining members -- thank you to all of you for keeping 97.3 FM, Richmond's tower of low power, on the radio and internet airwaves for another six months.  We can't do it without you!

If you've been waiting until the end of the drive to contribute -- well, now is that time.  We're so very close to our $40,000 goal, and that means your help right now can push us across the finish line and ensure that WRIR's next six months are just like its first 13 years: living proof that radio of, by and for the people is the independent media antidote to so many of our culture's current ailments.

Please consider making that donation today or tomorrow.  I'll be doing a special fund drive edition of Global A Go-Go Wednesday at 3 PM, featuring some of the most unlikely foreign-language cover songs that have crossed my path in the 14 years I've been doing this radio show.  And I'll be back on the air Wednesday between 7 and 11 PM, encouraging listeners to contribute during the drive's last four hours.  I'd love to be able to announce your name on the air, thank you for your support, and say that it's folks like you who make community radio in Richmond possible.

We have three easy ways for you to donate:
  1. Online at
  2. By calling 804-622-9747
  3. Or by visiting us in person at 1621-B W. Broad Street (2nd floor)
Thank you for considering it, and extra thanks if you've already contributed this spring or are a sustaining member.  Love live Richmond Independent Radio!