It's a new year and what better way to start than by sharing some new music with you. First up is Seckou Keita, a kora (West African harp-lute) virtuoso from Casamance, Senegal. This is beautiful, peaceful music, part of a lovely double CD set from the U.K. world music label ARC.
We turn next to a dynamic duo, the Dominican pianist Michel Camilo with flamenco guitar legend Tomatito. Spain Forever is their third voyage together, and like the first two it is a work of art.
Hot Colombian band Systema Solar has a new record out on Nacional Records, which surely will bump up their profile in the U.S. Algerian guitarist Nejim Bouizzoul makes a guest appearance on the song "Qué Pasó," giving the track a strong, hypnotic groove such as we find in gnawa, Moroccan trance music.
Ethiopian singer Gabriella Ghermandi follows, with music for voice, krar (traditional Ethopian harp), and keyboard. A terrific album from Ivory Coast's reggae singer Tiken Jah Fakoly is next, featuring great versions of classic reggae songs first made famous by Burning Spear, Bob Marley, Ken Boothe, Max Romeo, and others. The album was recorded at the legendary Tuff Gong studio in Kingston, as well as the Lumumba Studio in Bamako, Mali.
In the last trio of tracks, we'll hear music from Angolan legend Bonga, Cameroonian-born, New York bassist-singer Richard Bona, and Cuban pianist Roberto Fonseca. Fonseca's "Después" (After) is as beautiful as a bolero gets and features a fetching, gorgeous singer named Mercedes Cortes.
Hope you enjoy this eight-song set. More new releases coming next week!
Rhythm Planet Playlist for 1/6/17:
- Seckou Keita / “Mikhi Nathan Mu-Toma” (The Invisible Man) / Celebrating World Music 40 Years / Arc Music
- Michel Camilo & Tomatito / “Nuages” / Spain Forever / Verve International
- Systema Solar / “Qué Pasó” (featuring Nejim Bouizzoul) / Rumbo A Tierra / Nacional Records
- Gabriella Ghermandi / “Atse Tewodoros” / Ethiopia: Celebrating Emperor Tewodros II / Arc Music
- Tiken Jah Fakoly / “Slavery Days” / Racines / Barclay/Wrasse Records
- Bonga / “Tonokenu” / Recados De Fora / Lusafrica
- Richard Bona and Mandekan Cubano / “Eva” / Heritage / Qwest Records
- Roberto Fonseca / “Después” (featuring Mercedes Cortes on vocals) / Abuc / Impulse!