Splinters & Candy 09/29/14 WVKR



Splinters & Candy 09/29/14 WVKR by Splinters & Candy on Mixcloud

Splinters & Candy airs every Monday from 4-5PM ET on independent radio 91.3FM WVKR Poughkeepsie. Live streaming at wvkr.org. Each week Alex Brown presents an eclectic collection of music from around the world.

Tune in to hear music from Thailand, Tanzania, Morocco, Gabon, Turkey, Israel, Moravia, Sweden, Mauritania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea and beyond. Global sounds guaranteed to please. Thanks for listening.


Khun Narin Electric Phin Band – “Lai Sing”
Western Jazz Band – “Shida”
OUM – “Taragalte”
Oliver N’Goma – “Icole”
Bayir Olcay – “Min Bêriya Te Kiriye”
Ayelet Rose Gottlieb – “A Woman’s Song”
Dálava – “Vyšla Děvčina”
FatDog – “Jonas Slängpolska”
Malouma – “Maghrour”
Madilu System – “Tonton Gigolo”
Djeli Moussa Diawara – “Kana Mone”

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Calaita Flamenco Son – Self-titled

Calaita Flamenco Son

My recent review of Calaita Flamenco Son’s self-titled release for RootsWorld Magazine:


“Calaita Flamenco Son is a rewarding record that signals a great start for the band. Enjoyable for traditional and contemporary flamenco fans alike.”

Read more >

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Splinters & Candy 09/22/14 WVKR



Splinters & Candy 09/22/14 WVKR by Splinters & Candy on Mixcloud

Splinters & Candy airs every Monday from 4-5PM ET on independent radio 91.3FM WVKR Poughkeepsie. Live streaming at wvkr.org. Each week Alex Brown presents an eclectic collection of music from around the world.

Sonic explorations of music from Peru, India, Canada, USA, Honduras, Cameroon, Mali, Finland, Colombia and beyond. Expand your horizons with global diversity.


Laghonia – “Bahia”
Kiran Ahluwalia – “Jhoom”
Arun Ramamurthy Trio – “Dhanasri”
Pharaoh’s Daughter – “Adon Olam”
Aurelio Martinez – “Nando”
Sally Nyolo – “Me So Wa Yen”
Bombay Rickey – “Bombay 5-0″
Benyoro – “Kulanjan”
Samba Touré – “Walahi Mbafo”
Värttinä – “Valhe/The Lie”
Son Palenque – “El Tigre”

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She’Koyokh – Wild Goats & Unmarried Women

She'Koyokh - Wild Goats & Unmarried Women

Originally published in RootsWorld Magazine:


The whirling sounds of Eastern Europe, Turkey and the Balkans vibrate with plenty of verve on She’Koyokh’s Wild Goats & Unmarried Women. The London-based octet has been evolving over the past decade, working through a full range of Jewish, klezmer and Romani music along the way. On this release they extend their reach into even more musical traditions, including the sevdalinka of Bosnia and Herzogovinia, and Soviet jazz. Their multicultural ambition is matched by their roster of international talent. Comprised of members from the UK, USA, Greece, Serbia and Turkey, She’Koyokh mixes moving laments with lively, humorous compositions on an album packed full of surprises.

Wild Goats & Unmarried Women opens with “Beregovski Sher/Honga/Freilicher Yontov,” one of several medleys that appear on the record. The tune starts with a moderately paced tribute to Soviet-Jewish ethnomusicologist Moshe Beregovski before building up a head of steam for a Jewish version of a popular Hungarian honga dance. The track finishes with a song composed by Naftule Brandwein, the king of the klezmer clarinet, who on occasion would wear a costume of Christmas lights when he performed, which nearly electrocuted him once as a result of his perspiration. This sort of diversity is not unusual when She’Koyokh arrange pieces together to form something slightly unusual yet completely cohesive.

“Esmeria Min” is a traditional Kurdish love song from Turkey. It features Çiğdem Aslan on vocals who delivers a fine performance, but she really shines on one of album’s most moving tracks, “Selanik Türküsü.”

This Greek tune tells a story of a man who travels to Thessaloniki to find work. While there he falls in love with a beautiful girl and the pair agree to get married. A few days before the wedding they find out out the bride to be has cholera and they beg Death to let them live together a little while longer. Aslan’s voice carries all the emotional weight of the desperate lovers’ plea on an unforgettable composition.

“Ţigăneasca De La Pogoanele” is a quick romp inspired by the recordings of accordionist Constantin Fulgerica and violinist Tudor Pana in addition to the manouche jazz of the Quintet of the Hot Club of France. “Teke Zortlatmasi” serves as part of the inspiration behind the album title. Along the Southwestern coast of Turkey the billy goats (tekes) jump up and down to attract females during mating season. The hopping madness carries over into the song with wild abandon.

Wild Goats & Unmarried Women brings the passion of their vocals and instruments together to form a path full of twists and turns, but remains steady throughout. This anthology of European and Asian folk music is a treasure and captures all of the energy this band has to offer.

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Boris Kovač & La Campanella – Eastern Moon Rising

Boris Kovač & La Campanella - Eastern Moon Rising

Originally published in RootsWorld Magazine:


Boris Kovač explores the possibilities of Eastern and Western jazz with his band La Campanella on Eastern Moon Rising. Hints of European folk music and Balkan beats meet tango and the beguine on a mostly instrumental record shrouded in mystery. Kovač grew up in Novi Sad, an ethnically diverse region of Serbia, and has lived abroad in Italy, Slovenia and Austria. He enjoys working as a musician, composer, multimedia artist and theater collaborator. His theatrical flair is evident on the album cover, which features Kovač standing in the middle of a group portrait wearing a bright pink jacket and dark sunglasses. He holds his saxophone by the bell in one hand as he stares at the camera surrounded by his bandmates who join him wearing loud, eccentric clothing.

This mixture of styles results in an intriguing record that sounds modern yet retains a dreamy jazz age tone. An air of suspense and melancholy surrounds these dynamic compositions and there is no doubt Kovač’s work in the theater influences his dramatic vision for each song. These tracks could easily creep their way into a film, twisting and turning a scene with an undercurrent of tension.

While the musicians improvise passages and solos, this is not a free-for-all album. Kovač’s soprano and alto saxophone playing is mostly selective and restrained until the intensity builds and his horn wails onto the scene. He is complemented by Miloš Matić on double bass, Vukašin Mišković on guitars, Lav Kovač on drums and Goran Penić on accordion and sampler.The group’s brand of saxophone driven tango is prominently featured on Eastern Moon Rising. The accordion typically slots in alongside Kovač’s sax, often harmonizing or joining in call and response passages. Acoustic guitar usually gives way to electric when the band switches meter and tempo. Many songs start slowly until they break into quick flurries of intensity before dropping back to a languid pace.

Eastern Moon Rising may carry a somber tone, but that’s not to say it’s all serious business. The one vocal track, “Entertain You,” stars Boris Kovač as a smoky lounge singer with a deep, raspy voice. The fun lyrics are supplemented by an enthusiastic chorus from the band, revealing a bright sense of humor. This original record gets under your skin and reveals its depth with each listen.

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Splinters & Candy airs Mondays from 4-5PM ET on 91.3FM WVKR. Live streaming at wvkr.org. Each week Alex Brown presents an eclectic collection of music from around the globe.