Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Global beats and rhythms in the Valley with a wide range of internatonal artists coming to the Iron Horse in Northampton

Ilo Ferrera, Changes in Latitudes- Wednesday, August 3rd 7PM Iron Horse

So Jimmy Buffett walks into a bar… This being Jimmy Buffett, the bar is on some remote corner of the map – in this case Cape Verde, the Portuguese archipelago off the coast of West Africa. The travelers dropped their bags at a hotel and went off to look for food, liquor and music. They hit a few saloons and found great music everywhere. It was like Cape Verde was Beale Street, Memphis 1955 – everybody was a musician. But even in this player’s paradise, one young man stood out and knocked the world-weariness out of these music veterans. Ilo Ferreira was called onto the small stage at a local restaurant where everyone seemed to know everyone else. Ilo was young – looked like a college senior – and handsome. He showed quiet confidence as he picked up his guitar and adjusted his microphone. Then he started to play and sing and Buffett leaned forward... As a singer/songwriter, Ilo tends to line up with Pop Rock, and country music styles. Today he’s on the road with his American band and playing with Jimmy on his tour as special guest. By his own words “… to be part of the Buffett’s family on the road is like a rock n’roll dream taking shape. The first show I did with Jimmy got me in front of 57 thousand people from day to night. The biggest crowd I ever seen before was about 3 thousand. It’s being a terrific experience for me to see how this world of rock n’roll works…” .  Opening the show, a local band who tours nationally; Changes in Latitudes - Americas Premier Jimmy Buffett Tribute Show.

The Itals Sunday, August 14th 8:30PM Iron Horse
 One of Jamaica's signature harmony groups, The Itals were chiefly responsible for keeping the sound and spirit of roots reggae alive well into the dancehall era. The Itals have a genuine roots sound akin to Culture or the Mighty Diamonds.  They've never really gotten their due, overshadowed by roots acts like these, not to mention Israel Vibration and the Wailing Souls.  After having worked together in the late 1960's as The Westmorelites and going on to have successful solo careers, Porter, Ricketts and Davis formed The Itals in 1976. Their debut single In A Disya Time topped the Jamaican chart. Brutal Out Deh -- their first and often considered their best album from 1978-- is well-respected.  Heartfelt gems like "Herbs Pirate," "Smile Knotty Dread," and "Truth Must Reveal" give an impression of why The Itals have lasted as long as they have and are about as pure as roots reggae gets. They return to the Iron Horse, with original members Keith Porter, Lloyd Ricketts and Ronnie Davis who have reunited for the first time in 15 years.

Listen to “Satisfaction” from Rasta Philosophy.
Vieux Farka Touré, Shokazoba Thursday, August 25th7PM Iron Horse

With his 2010 World Cup performance before a billion people in Johannesburg, South Africa, Vieux Farka Touré has become one of the most celebrated African guitarists in history. Vieux now takes a dramatic next step with his new record, The Secret, produced by Soulive's Eric Krasno and featuring Dave Matthews, John Scofield,  Derek Trucks, and Vieux's final collaboration with his legendary father, Ali Farka Touré.  A highly talented guitarist, singer, songwriter, and percussionist, Vieux has crafted a global-minded style all his own. With flourishes of rock and reggae amidst Saharan Blues and traditional Malian melodies, Vieux Farka Touré ushers in the next generation of Mali blues. Seriously, the guy is an AMAZING guitarist and will transport you to another place.
“Vieux Farka Touré's beautifully realized debut recording both honors and extends the life work of his father, Ali Farka Touré: to explore and promote the rich music of Mali's desert north.” - Afropop Worldwide 

Sergent Garcia- Sunday September 4th 7PM Iron Horse

Sergent Garcia, an original figure in the Latin Alternative and European mestizo music scenes, is returning to North America with a burning live show a new album out on the Cumbancha label titled “Una y Otra Vez” (Time and Time Again). A pioneer in blending the fiery Caribbean sounds of salsa, reggae, ska and dancehall with a punk attitude and continental style, Sergent Garcia's latest musical adventure finds him traveling to Colombia to dive into what is currently the epicenter of some of the world's hottest sounds. Una y Otra Vez marks this former rocker's return to his independent roots and renewed creative energy.

Cumbancha y La Gwagwita Presents : UNA Y OTRA VEZ, TIME AND TIME AGAIN, THE MAGNIFICENT RETURN OF SERGENT GARCIA. The salsa-reggae superstar solidifies his legacy and explores exciting new directions with guests from Colombia's scorching electrotropical music scene.

“Fans of Manu Chao will find Sergent Garcia immediately recognizable: insistently catchy reggae and salsa rhythms, sing-song rap, horn riffs propelling the whole mix.”Financial Times (UK)

Boubacar Traore Trio- Wednesday, September 28th 7PM Iron Horse

Boubacar Traoré is one of the great veteran exponents of the African blues, a guitarist, singer and songwriter with a long, and sometimes pained history. At the time of Mali's independence, 50 years ago, he was a national celebrity, and the young sharp dressers of Bamako would dance to his songs such as Mali Twist and Kar Kar Madison: he was known as Kar Kar ("Dribble") because he was also a footballer. But by the late 1960s he had returned to his home region to work as a tailor and farmer, and later, after the death of his wife, he moved to France as a migrant labourer on building sites. Thankfully, he was persuaded to start recording again in 1990, since when he has revived his career in Mali. Mali Denhou (2011/Lusafrica/Proper ) is his first album in six years and shows he's still in impressive form, matching his thoughtful, soulful voice against an acoustic guitar style that mixes blues riffs with west African influences. His easy going, gently rhythmic playing is backed by n'goni, calabash and balafon, with outstanding contributions from the French harmonica player Vincent Bucher, whose inventive, sensitive or driving solos perfectly complement Traoré's laid back style. He may be in his late 60s, but he's still one of Mali's finest musicians

Sidi Toure –Tuesday, October 4th 7PM Iron Horse
"Sidi Touré is a worthy successor to Ali Farka Touré. Among Songhaï musicians, Sidi is the best. Sidi Toure has all the talent, quality , simplicity, playing and singing skills, it's incredible. We need people like Sidi." - Bassekou Kouyaté  

Sidi Touré was born in 1959 in the ancient town of Gao, Mali. He made his first guitar as a child, constructing it from his wooden writing slate. Growing up, Sidi Touré faced a conflict between the inexorable pull of music and the expectations of family and society, plus the significance and onus of a past that came with being born into a noble family. The Touré family had been sung about, and sung to, by traditional griots for centuries, but until Sidi Touré challenged the rules as a small boy, the Touré’s did not sing. Despite his family’s disapproval, Sidi became the lead singer of his school’s band, and then became the youngest member of Gao’s regional orchestra, the Songhaï Stars, who played bi-annual festivals like the Bamako Biennale and toured both regionally and nationally. After winning the award for best singer twice, he took the band to the northern regions of Mali and to Niger, and toured much of the western Sahel region. Throughout his time making music, Sidi’s sound has both captured and challenged his roots. His music moves from the translucent swaying takamba to the trance inducing Holley, while the lyrics often address many non-traditional issues. Sidi has a critical mind and his songs have a purpose.
Sidi was featured on The Takeaway Show with Vincent Moon. Watch the film here!

Tickets for all shows at the Iron Horse in Northampton are on sale at Northampton Box Office, 76 Main Street, 413-586-8686 and online at IHEG.com.

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