Reggae/World

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Bob Marley & The Wailers

Bob Marley & The Wailers

Exodus - 40 [2CD]

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Bob Marley & the Wailers' classic Exodus album, the ninth studio album of the band, was released on June 3, 1977, featuring a new backing band including brothers Carlton and Aston 'Family Man' Barrett on drums and bass, Tyrone Downie on keyboards, Alvin 'Seeco' Patterson on percussion, and the I Threes, Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths and Rita Marley on backing vocals, and newest member Julian 'Junior Marvin' on guitar. The album was released on June 3, 1977, just six months after an assassination attempt was made on Bob Marley's life in Jamaica in December, forcing him to flee to London, where Exodus was recorded. This June marks the 40th anniversary of Exodus named the 'Best Album of the 20th Century' by Time magazine in 1999 with a series of four separate reissues, three of which will feature Exodus 40 - The Movement Continues, son Ziggy Marley's newly curated 'restatement' of the original album. As part of the celebration, Ziggy Marley has intimately revisited the original session recordings, uncovering unused and never-before-heard vocals, lyric phrasing and instrumentation, incorporating and transforming these various elements into brand-new session takes. The 2CD softpack edition contains the original album and the Ziggy Marley 'restatement.'
Bob Marley & The Wailers
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Mali Music

Mali Music

The Transition of Mali

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Grammy Award nominated Mali Music's highly-anticipated new album The Transition of Mali is his sophomore release following his major label debut, Mali Is. The lead single "Gonna Be Alright" is already being met with praise by many critics and the track truly gives fans a glimpse into Mali's mind.
Mali Music
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Bokanté

Bokanté

Strange Circles

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Snarky Puppy's Michael League leads Bokante on their debut album ''Strange Circles,'' out June 9th on GroundUP Music. For the newly-formed international music ensemble Bokante, connection is the foundation upon which all things are built. Rich in the sounds of both delta and desert, the unusual but evocative instrumentation on their debut album, ''Strange Circles,'' blends musical worlds to convey an urgent message of social awareness against the rising tide of exclusion and human indifference. The album goes from Zeppelin-esque blues stomp to folkloric Carribbean kaladja over the course of its ten tracks, blending the extensive and varied knowledge of the individual players with a strong, yet empathetic, lyrical approach. The band features 8 world-class musicians from 4 continents, each one accomplished in their own right and well versed in music far beyond that of their point of origin. Bokante (which means ''exchange'' in Creole comes together to create a diverse ensemble rich in groove, melody, and soul. ''Unity is paramount in the formation of this group,'' observed League. ''Though the ensemble is multi-lingual, mult-cultural, and mult-generation, we all feel connected as musicians and people. And in combining our different accents I feel that there is a strangely common and poignant sound, one that can reach and relate to listeners around the world.''
Bokanté
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Omar Souleyman

Omar Souleyman

To Syria, With Love

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Syrian musician Omar Souleyman's new album, To Syria, With Love, is set for release June 2 via Mad Decent. The follow up to 2015's Bahdeni Nami marks Souleyman's third full-length studio record. In support of the new release, Souleyman will tour the U.S. in May, playing select dates including New York, Los Angeles, Detroit and Salt Lake City as well as festival performances at Form Arcosanti in Arizona and MoogFest in North Carolina. To Syria, With Love is a departure musically and lyrically from his previous material, with focus on more elaborate keyboard and techno elements. Completely setting politics aside, Souleyman consciously shares this personal ode to his native country with an emphasis on his emotional connection to the land and people but not without heartache in view of the nation's current state. "It's been six years I've been away, and I'm tired of looking for home and asking about my loved ones. My soul is wounded and it's like having dust in my eyes," Souleyman says.
Omar Souleyman
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Yasmine Hamdan

Yasmine Hamdan

Al Jamilat

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With her debut solo album Ya Nass (2013), Yasmine Hamdan introduced her personal, modern take on Arabic pop. In Al Jamilat ('The Beautiful Ones'), she pursues her musical exploration, while taking a look at the mutations at work within the Arab world.
Yasmine Hamdan
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Orchestra Baobab

Orchestra Baobab

Tribute To Ndiouga Dieng

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2017 release. West Africa's most iconic dance-band is back. A decade on from their last album and almost half a century since their formation, Senegal's Orchestra Baobab return with a timeless set of classic, swaying tunes fusing Afro-Cuban rhythms and African tradition in the group's trademark style. Recorded locally in Moussa X's Dakar studio, the new recordings sound fresh and yet reassuringly familiar, retaining the ripeness of the sound that made Orchestra Baobab a legend but interpreted with a vigor and vibrancy, and with a few twists, that are vital and captivating. As enduring as the mighty African Baobab tree from which the group derives it's name, the veteran core of the band remains as strong and sturdy as ever. Vocalists Balla Sidibe and Rudy Gomis, saxophonists Issa Sissoko and Thierno Koite and the long-serving, rock steady rhythm section of Balla Sidibe, timbales, Charlie Ndiaye bass and Mountaga Koite on congas. Tribute To Ndiouga Dieng is dedicated to one of the bands original vocalists who sadly died in November 2016. His songs will continue to be sung with the band by his son Alpha. It represents the latest chapter in a long and storied career that started in 1970 when the newly-formed Orchestra Baobab helped forge Dakar into one of the world's most vital musical cities. Over the next decade the group dominated the local scene and produced countless hits before disbanding in the early '80s.
Orchestra Baobab
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Rough Guide
When the Country blues was first recorded in the mid-1920s, it was not only played and appreciated by African-Americans but also by white performers and audiences alike. During this time, it was common practice for record companies to separate the music of the American South into two categories: the ‘race’ series, aimed at a black audience; and the ‘hillbilly’ series, aimed at white audiences. This division along racial lines was in fact superficial, as black and white musicians shared much with respect to genre and repertoire and the separation of the two on commercial recordings grew out of the prejudices of record companies. Often overlooked is the fact that there was a huge amount of musical exchange and interaction between white and black musicians at this time. For many early country musicians the blues was liberating, as it freed them from the clichés of the sentimental songs and saccharine harmonies of mainstream radio singers of the day. In the same way that black sharecroppers found solace in the blues, the white working class – such as miners and mill workers ¬¬– were drawn to the blues as a way of expressing the hardships of daily life. One such performer was Frank Hutchison who came from a rough and isolated mountain community in West Virginia where both black and white miners worked side by side. Hutchison’s style was heavily influenced by local black performers and here he gives a classic rendition of the American folk song ‘Stackalee’. Dick Justice was also from West Virginia, and his version of ‘Cocaine’ is undoubtedly modelled on Luke Jordan’s 1927 race recording. Likewise, the enormous influence of the great Blind Lemon Jefferson is very much in evidence in mountain musician Larry Hensley’s stellar cover of Lemon’s ‘Match Box Blues’ as well as Clarence Greene’s nimble playing on ‘Johnson City Blues’. Known as the ‘Father Of Country Music’, Jimmie Rodgers was heavily influenced by the blues which became a prominent element of his music. In turn, black musicians listened to his records and were inspired by his famous ‘blue yodels’ which can be heard in the vocal delivery of two Delta legends Howlin' Wolf and Tommy Johnson. Cliff Carlisle was another who fell under the spell of Jimmie Rodgers’, and accompanied his yodelling with a Hawaiian-influenced slide guitar style to great effect. Among others who were inspired by the Hawaiian guitar craze popular in American mainstream culture were the Dixon Brothers as well as another country duo Darby And Tarleton, who had a large number of blues songs in their repertoire. Other featured early country music pioneers such as Charlie Poole and Doc Boggs were less directly influenced by black musicians and merely embellished their overall repertoires with blues derived songs. Often the word ‘blues’ was attached to a song even if it wasn’t a blues song in the strictest sense of the word. An area often overlooked and least understood in the development of the blues is the parlour guitar tradition which derives from Europe during the late 1700s when the middle class would play light classical pieces on the guitar. When the settlers and immigrants carried this tradition to America, it gradually filtered down to the lower classes. Many of these compositions required the guitar strings to be tuned to an open chord, and this along with the picking technique where the thumb was used to create a steady or alternating bass were absorbed into the blues tradition. Two classic examples of this at work are ‘Spanish Fandango’ and the opening ‘Guitar Rag’, both of which give further evidence of the incredible musical exchange between black and white musical cultures in the development of the blues.
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Celtic Thunder
Celtic Thunder presents... Emmet Cahill's Ireland a collection of Irish classics that have been passed down from generation to generation from celebrated Irish tenor and member of Celtic Thunder Emmet Cahill. Emmet Cahill's Ireland offers the very best of the traditional Irish repertoire. Song selections include: "I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen," "An Irish Lullaby," "My Cavan Girl," "Macushla," and more.
Celtic Thunder
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Tinariwen

Tinariwen

Elwan

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For the last five years, Tinariwen have been busy criss-crossing the globe bringing their triumpant tours to all five continents and expanding their audience. During this time their beloved homeland in the Adrar des Ifoghas, a Saharan mountain range that straddles the border between north-eastern Mali and southern Algeria has, in effect, been transformed into a conflict zone, a place where nobody can venture without putting themselves in danger. These conflicts have forced the band into exile to record their 8th album, Elwan. Elwan means ‘the elephants ‘ - an animal metaphor to describe those ‘beasts’, whether militias or multinational consortiums, who have trampled everything in their path: in the desert, where both the human and ecological equilibriums are extremely fragile. Tinariwen chose to record this album is several locations around the world, including for 4 days at the desert hideaway of Rancho De La Luna studio in Joshua Tree, CA, the studio known as a favored refuge for many an eclectic artist from Queens of the Stone Age to Daniel Lanios to Arctic Monkeys to Iggy Pop and more. For Tinariwen, the geographical location of the studio proved to be particularly propitious in terms of creativity. And the human climate was just as favorable. A few friends dropped in during the sessions to add some magic to a few tracks including, Kurt Vile (electric guitar), Mark Lanegan ( Vocals on ‘Nànnuflày’), Matt Sweeney (electric guitar) and producer/guitarist, Alain Johannes (Cigarbox guitar). Sessions were also recorded in Morocco, where the band were accompanied by local musicians, in a land where they are considered musical legends. Lovers of those sensual yet abrasive riffs that are Tinariwen’s signature won’t be disappointed. But neither will those who love their funky, danceable side, which comes through loud and clear. All that potential has been wonderfully honed by the album’s mixing engineer Andrew Schepps, known well for his work with the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Johnny Cash, and Jay Z.
Tinariwen
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Bob Marley & The Wailers

Bob Marley & The Wailers

Live! [3 LP]

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Bob Marley and the Wailers were at the peak of their artistic powers when they arrived at the Lyceum London for two shows on July 17 and 18, 1975, having just released Natty Dread the year before and about to unleash Rastaman Vibration on the world. The Rolling Stones mobile studio was on hand to record both shows, with seven songs from the second released as Live!, in December of that same year. Live! will now be released on vinyl and digital including the two full shows for the first time.
Bob Marley & The Wailers
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Celtic Woman

Celtic Woman

Voices Of Angels

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Celtic Woman has a remarkable twelve-year legacy of introducing the most talented singers and musicians from Ireland onto the world stage. Voices Of Angels showcases the angelic voices of Susan McFadden, Mairead Carlin, Eabha McMahon and introduces the breathtaking new Celtic violinist Tara McNeill. The Voices Of Angels (Manhattan/Caroline) album contains some of the most popular songs from the Celtic Woman repertoire along with several previously unrecorded tracks, all with stunning new orchestral arrangements recorded with the 72-piece Orchestra of Ireland.
Celtic Woman
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Zomba Prison Project

Zomba Prison Project

I Will Not Stop Singing

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Follow-up release to the Grammy-nominated album "I Have No Everything Here" by the Zomba Prison Project, once again produced by Grammy winner Ian Brennan (TV on the Radio). Album recordings of inmates at a dilapidated prison in Milawi, Africa. Their recordings have brought international attention to prison injustices.
Zomba Prison Project
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Lee 'scratch' Perry

Lee 'scratch' Perry

Must Be Free

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Dub reggae legend Lee Scratch Perry returns to the studio with a wide-ranging narrative, in collaboration with Spacewave. This Grammy-winning artist, songwriter, and producer doesn't hesitate with his unexpurgated commentary on his spirituality, good and evil, the human condition, and aliens. Featured are reggae, dub, dubstep, acid jazz, and electronic music and music influences. Special guests include Subatomic Sound System, The Groovematist, and Phloboi.
Lee 'scratch' Perry
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Richard Bona Mandekan Cubano

Richard Bona Mandekan Cubano

Heritage

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Fans call him ''The African Sting,'' critics call him a pro. Originally from Cameroon, Richard Bona remains true to his roots on Heritage , his 8th album as a leader and the first one with his Afro-Cuban band ''Mandekan Cubano.'' An energetic, life affirming and truly fantastic album, it explores the alchemy of African rhythms in Cuba. Richard Bona is a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform, which has led to a host of awards along with his fruitful collaborations with colleagues Bobby McFerrin, Pat Metheny, Joe Zawinul, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Paul Simon, John Legend and Stevie Wonder.
Richard Bona Mandekan Cubano
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Stephen Marley

Stephen Marley

Revelation Part II: The Fruit Of Life

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Fruit of Life is the second installment of Stephen Ragga Marley's two part series, following Revelation Part I: The Root of Life (2011). Whereas The Root of Life is more a traditional roots reggae album, The Fruit of Life will utilize a diversified sonic palette to express the far-reaching impact Jamaican music has had on various genres, especially hip hop. Produced by Marley, Fruit of Life boasts 18 new tracks and features a variety of guest collaborations with Rick Ross, Pit Bull, Damian 'Jr. Gong' Marley, Iggy Azalea, Waka Flocka Flame, Dead Prez, Rakim, DJ Khaled, Busta Rhymes, Wyclef Jean, Shaggy, Black Thought (of The Roots), Bounty Killer, Sizzla, Capleton, Ky-Mani Marley, Jo Mersa and more.
Stephen Marley
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Reggae Gold 2016

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Major street visibility campaigns in NYC, Miami, Toronto and London, ENG to support launch to include: Subway poster campaign Street postering, flier distribution at all major Caribbean events beginning May 15th Digital display, search and banner ad campaigns
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Encompassing the marabi, kwela and jive styles of mid-twentieth century urban South African music, this compilation covers the sounds, styles, assemblages and musicians that reside under the umbrella of South African jazz – from the golden age of 1960s and 1970s to the new wave of musicians in the twenty years of post-apartheid democracy. Recently re-issued releases from musician-in-exile Ndikho Xaba demonstrate the strong transatlantic dialogue between the civil rights movements in the USA and the anti-apartheid struggle through the language of jazz, with the rare single ‘KwaBulawayo’ as performed by his group The African Echoes. The Sowetan spiritual Afro-jazz of Batsumi on the track ‘Emampndweni’ contributes to the narrative of music at home during the height of apartheid in the 1970s and similarly slots into the category of undeservedly lesser-known artistry. From a period considered by some as the golden era of South African Jazz, these artists and their compositions are pertinent and vital reminders of the intrinsic link between this music and the dismantling of oppression. One of the most prominent figures of the South African jazz movement is the composer and pianist Abdullah Ibrahim, whose career spans over 50 years, including a performance at Nelson Mandela’s 1994 Presidential inauguration. Having played alongside Abdullah Ibrahim, the late Zim Ngqawana was a leading proponent of the exploration of free improvisation. While retaining South African jazz roots, Ngqawana incorporates traditional and avant-garde elements in his performances. This is prominently illustrated with the rasping vocals and volatile harmonica on the track ‘Ebhofolo’. Gospel, hip-hop and electronic music now dominate mainstream music in South Africa. But against this backdrop, the new school of South African jazzers have embraced the diversity of musical output, with many making the crossover themselves. Bokani Dyer regularly performs with fellow band member and bassist Shane Cooper, in his electronic music alias Card On Spokes. Furthermore, it could be argued the trajectory of popular music in South Africa over the last twenty years is personified by Thandiswa Mazwai, who rose to prominence through her work with kwaito group Bongo Maffin in the mid-1990s, before going on to encompass gospel and delve into maskanda and electronic music in her solo career. Featured here is Thandiswa’s take on the South African Jazz standard ‘Ntyilo Ntyilo’. South African jazz may now sit on the fringes of popular culture in South Africa, but you only have to look at the success of the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Joy Of Jazz Festival in Johannesburg and the National Youth Jazz Festival to recognise the legacy of the pioneering musicians and the continuation of their collaborative spirit in the wealth of burgeoning jazz talent in South Africa.
Rough Guide
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Rough Guide
The 1920s was undoubtedly the era of the female blues singer. With their origins in the worlds of vaudeville and jazz music, they enjoyed great commercial success throughout the decade, selling a considerable number of records and packing out clubs and theatres alike. Never has there been another time when women so dominated the genre and made the blues so much their own. Mamie Smith was the first to emerge from the vaudeville circuit and became the first African-American artist to make a blues recording in 1920 with the featured ‘Crazy Blues’. The immense success of this recording opened the door for many others to follow such as Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Sippie Wallace and Ida Cox. Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith were undoubtedly the most captivating and expressive of what became known as the ‘classic blues’ singers. Both dressed in flamboyant style and their powerful voices and forceful personalities set the standard for recorded blues, selling well among a southern rural audience familiar with their travelling tent shows and musical revues. Drawing upon some of the finest jazz talent of the early and mid-1920s for studio accompaniment, the classic blues of Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey and other popular blues singers was always full of double entendre or hidden and multiple meanings. Although an outcrop of Southern rural blues, an expression of the poor and oppressed, the sequined glamour of the classic blues was seen as a welcome contrast to drab lives. So while the blues until the 1920s was largely local, rural, Southern and male, these women were urban performance artists, travelling and performing in the new speakeasies and nightclubs of a dynamic era. The classic blues had a great impact also on important rural bluesmen, and here both Kate McTell and Bertha Lee are accompanied by their illustrious bluesmen husbands Messrs Blind Willie McTell and Charley Patton. Likewise, Blind Blake provides typically nimble and ingenious accompaniment for Irene Scruggs – commonly known as ‘Chocolate Brown’ – on ‘Itching Heel’ which demonstrates sublime interplay between the two. These vintage tracks highlight the significant role that women have played in the more rural aspects of early blues, which is further demonstrated by the haunting voice of Lottie Kimbrough whose self-penned song ‘Rolling Log Blues’ has subsequently been recorded by many important blues performers. During the 1930s, blues music underwent a radical change as larger-than-life female singers fell out of favour with the public and male guitarists like Blind Lemon Jefferson, Charley Patton and Tampa Red started to capture people’s imagination. Memphis Minnie, though, transcended this change in the public's musical tastes, as her powerful vocals commanded authority and her six-string skills rivalled and, in many cases, surpassed those of her male contemporaries. Mattie Delaney was another accomplished guitarist whose variant of Tommy Johnson’s ‘Big Road Blues’ shows how she possessed one of the most remarkable voices in country blues. Geeshie Wiley is widely considered to be one of the greatest ever recorded country blues singers whose style is totally unconventional. Here she teams up with her female compatriot Evie Thomas for a wonderful rendition of ‘Pick Poor Robin Clean’. When the Depression effectively ended the careers of many of the classic blues artists including Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith, the blues revivalists were ultimately looking for an "authenticity" that they equated with the country blues, particularly that of the Mississippi Delta region, so many of the blues queens of the 1930s were largely forgotten. This welcome collection deservedly revives the memory of both the urban and rural female blues singers who played a pivotal role in the development of the blues.
Rough Guide
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