Various: Musica Negra in the Americas (Network/Soutbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

The Congos: Fisherman (Jamaica)
Various: Musica Negra in the Americas (Network/Soutbound)

Some years ago the estimable Network label released the groundbreaking Desert Blues collection of music from the Sahara region, a superb double disc in a beautiful and informative long-form package.

This re-release of the similarly conceived collection of the music of the various slavery cultures of the Americas is its equal: two discs of 33 tracks which is a geographical tour-de-force as much as guide through numerous vibrant rhythms and songs from the Mississippi Delta (Big Mama Thorton with Muddy Waters) through the Caribbean (Cuba, Haiti, the Congos' glorious Fisherman representing Jamaica) and into Central America, small regional musics (the coastal Garifuna style -- see Andy Palacio tag) and through Peru, Brazil and so on.

So here are exciting tracks by some names which may be slightly familiar to Elsewhere listeners (Palacio from Belize, Susana Baca from Peru, the Abyssinians from Jamaica) but mostly offers the delights of the unfamiliar: music from Suriname, Curacao, Guadeloupe . . .

With just a track or two from each country there is a danger that this could lose the thread, but as with their Sahara collection (and the Sufi Soul set), the compilers are people who really know their stuff and one track flows seamlessly into the next.

A terrific, colourfully presented double set (with an essay and historical notes on each artist, country and style) which will constantly surprise, delight and illuminate.

Party on.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE WORLD MUSIC QUESTIONNAIRE:  St Germaine

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE WORLD MUSIC QUESTIONNAIRE: St Germaine

When Elsewhere first encountered Frenchman Ludovic Navarre (aka St Germain) some 20 years on the back of his breakthrough album Boulevard, his English was virtually non-existent and the French at... > Read more

Various: Music of Central Asia Vol 4, Bardic Divas (Smithsonian/Elite)

Various: Music of Central Asia Vol 4, Bardic Divas (Smithsonian/Elite)

This beautifully packaged collection -- informative booklet, DVD with doco footage and interactive instrument section -- is not only a handsome set, but contains the remarkable voices of women... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Paris, France: Clubbed by culture

Paris, France: Clubbed by culture

We were -- with a few exceptions in the café -- exhausted foot soldiers in the Art Wars. The small café where we found ourselves that late afternoon, on the corner of Rue de... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Grayson Gilmour

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Grayson Gilmour

Currently touring on the back of his excellent new album Infinite Life! (dates below, album reviewed here), Grayson Gilmour took time out to answer our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire . . . and his... > Read more