The Real World night at this year's Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow paid tribute to the much loved, much missed Martyn Bennett with a short but outstanding set by Cuillin Music. This is what the press said:
"Cuillin Music continued to celebrate the memory of piper Martyn Bennett, under the direction of his widow Kirsten. Their urgent, dynamic assault with three fiddles, pipers, whistles and beats was particularly poignant as it marked the precise anniversary of Bennett's untimely death two years ago" ((The Scotsman)
"A storming set from Cuillin Music...was a stirring reminder of his legacy as the foremost new traditionalist. Reprising his pungent, juddering electro-reels, the band's fiddles and bagpipes blended into a wash of samples from the keyboard...a stark reminder of his ability to seamlessly meld traditoinal and contemporary styles" (The Independent)
"..Cuillin Music...continue to promote the rich and creative legacy of visionary composer and performer Martyn Bennett....They delivered a thrilling handful of tracks from Bennett's Bothy Culture and Hardland, keeping the flame alive by reworking the material rather than seeking simply to replicate the originals." (The Herald)
On January 31st as part of Glasgow's Celtic Connections Festival Real World presented its first showcase north of the boarder. In the beautiful venue of the Old Fruitmarket the audience were treated to a night of uplifting voices, superlative musicianship, dub and grooves from West Africa to Central Asia, London to Ohio!
" A near-capacity crowd was treated to a succession of outstanding performances, starting with the young Mauritanian singer-songwriter Daby Touré, whose supple, soaring vocals were framed by bracing taut, reggae-infused guitar, bass and percussion backing. Next up were Cuillin Music, the band who continue to promote the rich creative legacy of visionary composer Martyn Bennett, who died two years ago....who delivered a thrilling handful of tracks. Then came Uzbekistani singer Sevara Nazarkhan, a pixie-like figure with a ferocious voice, matched by the dub, dance and electronica backdrop from her four-piece band. Finally the Fruitmarket resounded to the mighty guitar virtuosity of Skip "Little Axe" McDonald, flanked by the heavy-duty rhythm team of Doug Wimbish and Keith LeBlanc (of the Sugarhill Gang) with live mixing by DJ/producer Adrian Sherwood... they stirred together a dark, delicious stew of blues, gospel and soul " (The Herald)
Real Word sends a big thank you to Donald Shaw and all the hard-working Celtic Connections team for their generous invitation to invade their Festival with something a little bit more alternative than Celtic sounds.
..."TALKING TO PETER GABRIEL, ONE IS struck by how he is as much into technology as music, and deeply involved in the political implications of both. You can see why Gabriel brought out the late Martyn Bennett's powerful roots-electronic album Grit on his label, Real World, and why he's excited that his connection with Bennett's "brave new music" has led to Real World's first Scottish showcase, at Celtic Connections next week...
...I've been lucky to meet Peter Gabriel several times over the years. Once, at an early WOMAD (World of Music and Dance) Festival in Cornwall, before his 1980s Amnesty Tour, we talked in his car about Chilean singer Víctor Jara and the exile of Inti Illimani. Another time, down at the Real World Studios for BBC Radio 4, he took me and the producer by surprise by rowing us up the millstream that runs under the studios, because, as he remembers now, "it was a glorious day!" The movement of the oars made recording the interview impossible, so we chatted until he stopped mid-river, then were slowly carried back downstream as the tape ran, before he insisted we stay for lunch..."
Today sees some major changes to realworldremixed.com and the launch of our second Remix Competition - remixing Joi's 'Without Zero' could see you spending the day in Real World Studios flagship space, the Big Room.
We hope you enjoy the new look, the forum searching, the new sample pack, the radio, player improvements and competition features. As ever let us know if you have any problems with the site.
Launched now on the new Joi website, you can listen to the 'Without Zero' radio programme. Farook Shamsher aka Joi talks about the tracks on his forthcoming album. This is your chance to hear the new tunes before the CD is out on February 12! Just click on the link below!
Friends of Martyn Bennett will be performing a short set as part of the Real World Night at the Glasgow Fruitmarket on January 31st.
Martyn's music represented a huge leap forward in Scottish contemporary culture. Martyn was unique as both a virtuoso player and a lover of technology; as a result he produced a bold synthesis of traditional tunes, dance music and classical sensibility which no-one else would have been able to carry off. His own live band Cuillin Music applied a scorched earth policy to the folk scene, and this year's performance at Celtic Connections will attempt to recreate the sound and the euphoria of his live performances.
The band will be made up of friends, collaborators and admirers. Kirsten Bennett, Martin Swan, Fraser Fifield, Ross Ainslie, Adam Sutherland, and Greg Lawson will play tracks from Bothy Culture and Hardland in a spirit of celebration and fond remembrance.
'Come Back to Me' is currently on the BBC Asian Network's A Playlist and, with your help, could feature in next weeks top 20 charts.
Visit the BBC Asian Network website and vote for Joi by selecting 'Come Back To Me' from the A Playlist.
Join Ravi Sagoo on Saturday at 13.00 to hear the results.
You can listen to Farook Shamsher aka Joi discussing his new album 'Without Zero' on the BBC Asian Network's chart show with Ravi Sagoo at 1.30 on Saturday 20 January (UK time).
The album is already causing a real stir on radio across the UK - find out why!
In June 2006 Yungchen Lhamo performed at the Festival of Sacred Music of Fes. You can watch her exquisite performance and hear an interview where Yungchen Lhamo expresses her philosophy and the relevance of her Buddest faith in the modern world.
The video is on the Mondomix world music magazine online website.