For American audiences, in case you missed it, The Blind Boys' version of Ben Harper's "I Shall Not Walk Alone" could be heard in the ending scene of last week's episode of ABC's hit series "Lost." That CD "Higher Ground" is now available (including performances with Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals) from Real World Records.
The initial release of Go Tell It on the Mountain was followed by a tour which included special guests who sang or performed on the CD. In December 2003, a special holiday concert was held at the historic Beacon Theater in New York City, along with vocal guests Aaron Neville, Chrissie Hynde, Mavis Staples and Michael Franti, as well as musical guests Robert Randolph, Charlie Musselwhite, Duke Robilliard, and ace keyboard player John Medeski. PBS filmed that show and it will be presented as a Holiday special entitled BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA - GO TELL IT ON THE MOUN TAIN as part of their December 2004 pledge drive (check local listings). The program will air nationally between Dec. 4- 14. The program features a mix of gospel standards, such as "Down By The Riverside" and "Amazing Grace," as well as holiday songs chosen in collaboration with the guests. Mavis Staples joins us on "Born in Bethlehem," a song she learned as a child; Chrissie Hynde performs "In the Bleak Midwinter," a traditional English Christmas song; and Aaron Neville sings "Joy to the World." There's also the holiday classic "Little Drummer Boy," with spoken word by Michael Franti. You will be able to purchase a DVD copy of the concert with your pledge to PBS.
At The British Documentary Awards - GRIERSON 2004, the BMG/ZOMBA Award for Best Arts Documentary was awarded to MAC TV for their film about Martyn Bennett.
(Director: David F Rea/Producers: Ann Morrison/Calum AngusMackay)
Martyn Bennett exploded onto the musical scene in the 90s with his electrifying fusion of Celtic music and driving dancebeats. But Martyn has been away from the performing circuit in recent years, waging a private battle with cancer. This unique profile takes us to his remote studio on Mull, where, during the lowest points of his illness he produced his astonishing new album Grit a passionate and moving blend of archive recordings and electronica.
Private Eye editor and documentary maker Ian Hislop presented GRIERSON 2004. Ten awards recognising the very best in documentary-making were presented. The winners were selected from two hundred entrants by nine panels of judges from across the industry and beyond.
Martyn Bennett's album 'Grtit' has been nominated for a Scots Trad Music Award! Described in the nomination list as an 'unforgettable album' and Martyn as an artist who 'continues to astound'. You can vote for Grit on the Hands Up For Trad website. Hands up for Trad, in association with BBC Scotland Interactive, will be hosting the second annual Scots Trad Music Awards 2004 on Saturday, December 4th at 7.30pm in Edinburgh's Queen's Hall. The aim of the Awards is to celebrate Scotland's rich musical heritage and in doing so, create a high profile annual event to bring traditional music centre stage. The Awards encompass Scotland's thriving traditional music scene from Gaelic and Scots song, folk music, Scottish dance to pipe bands and more. This year's event will again be opened by the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture. Tickets can be bought from the Queen's Hall (Edinburgh) Box Office 0131 668 2019 (priced from £8 - £15).
It is with great sadness that we must announce the death of Charles Zawose in hospital in Stockholm on Sunday 24 October. Charles had been ill for sometime and in spite of many efforts from friends and family to ensure he received the best medical care he finally became too ill to even travel home. Charles was in Sweden at the time for a series of performances fhaving travelled the week before from his home in Bagamoyo, Tanzania.
Charles Zawose was the nephew of the legendary Dr Hukwe Zawose and they travelled together worldwide - touring in support of Peter Gabriel and WOMAD and recording for Real World Records and WOMAD Select. With the death of both Hukwe in December 2003 and now Charles we have lost the two most important performers of the beautiful and magical music of the Wagogo people of Doduma, Tanzania.
Opal Lounge, 9 Swallow St, off Regents St, Piccadilly Circus, London W1
Saturday 2nd October
Following the UK premiere screening of Mutiny: Asians Storm British Music @Raindance Film Festival, the organisers host a special after party / gig featuring artists at the helm of the Rise of what became to be known as Asian Underground
Pandit-G (Asian Dub Foundation)
State of Bengal
Sweet Blood: Semi Live set
(feat. Black Star Liner's Choque Hosein + vocalist Wajid Rehman)
Bobby & Nihal (Radio1)
Special vocal sets
£5 / £7
Even if you can't make it to the movie - come to the club- but a ticket from the movie will give you a concession of £ 5 to the club!
On October 17,the Blind Boys of Alabama will be hosting their 60th Anniversary Show at the University of Alabama-Birmingham (USA). This concert marks 60 years since their first professional performance, also in Birmingham, back in 1944.
'Champagne and Grits' is causing a positive stir in the UK press! Speaking from New York where the recently reformed Tackhead have been playing, Skip MacDonald is interviewed by Andy Gill for The Independent. Read the full interview.
Combining music documetary and social documentary, MUTINY charts the meteroic rise of Asian music in 1990's Britain. Shot independently on digital video over 7 years Mutiny features Asian Dub Foundation, Joi, State of Bengal, Talvin Singh, Fun^Da^Mental and many more. The artists who emerged from this era became some fo the greatest innovators in British music mixing the influences of their parent's culture with electronica, hip hop, reggae and punk. Directed by New Yorker Vivek Bald, MUTINY has its UK premier on Saturday 2 October at 7.20 at the UGC Sgaftesbury Avenue, Piccadilly, London W1D 7DH as part of the Raindance Film Festival. Vivek Bald will be present for Q & A. Tickets can be booked in advance.