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Summer treats

From Andean to zydeco, pick your flavor and there's a summer music festival ready to serve it up.
Whether classical, jazz, pop, or folk, 'tis the season to get out and enjoy the music
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 18, 2010
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Mexican president flubs it at the Kennedy school

Only a day before the Massachusetts Senate showed its true colors by approving a set of anti-immigrant amendments to the state budget — a recent change of heart that would probably not have happened had it not been for the so-called Arizona effect — the
Yo No Tengo Huevos Dept.
By MARCELA GARCIA  |  June 04, 2010
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Two and fro

It can be easy to get wrapped up in Portland’s pop and rock scene, the singalong stuff you hear in the clubs and on the radio.
Kolosko and Dimow’s Border Crossings
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  March 26, 2010
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Joe Cuba | El Alcalde Del Barrio

Fania kicks off 2010 with what is sure to end up being one of the year's most important archival releases of Latin music.
Fania (2010)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  March 12, 2010

Singer/songwriter Graeme Kennedy is back in town

... and he’s got ambitious plans for his McKeenstreet Music.
Sibilance
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  March 12, 2010
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The good old days

As if it weren’t enough that the venerable Paramount Theatre on Washington Street was open for the first time since 1976, the Celebrity Series of Boston brought in as the initial act to play the new 600-seat mainstage Max Raabe and his Palast Orchester.
Max Raabe & Palast Orchester, live at the Paramount Theatre, March 6, 2010
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  March 12, 2010


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Alejandro Franov | Digitaria

Alejandro Franov is an Argentine multi-instrumentalist who's been involved in the more serious, and often experimental, side of the Buenos Aires music scene since he was a teen in the late 1980s.
Nature Bliss (2010)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  March 05, 2010
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Jew note

Defining "Jewish" music is pretty much a fool's task — not much easier than defining jazz.
First Annual Boston Jewish Music Festival, plus the Klezmatics
By JON GARELICK  |  February 26, 2010
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Review: El Perro Del Mar at the Brattle

Sharing a bill, a backing band, and the cramped stage of the Brattle Theatre last Friday, two Swedish singer-songwriters turned it up to the world-music equivalent of 11 for an audience that, for the most part, refused to dance.
El Perro Del Mar and Taken by Trees, live at the Brattle Theatre, February 19, 2010
By EUGENIA WILLIAMSON  |  February 26, 2010
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Netsky notes

Hankus Netsky founded the Klezmer Conservatory Band 30 years ago at New England Conservatory and sparked an American klezmer revival that continues to this day.
The KCB's main man talks Klezmer
By JON GARELICK  |  February 26, 2010
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Choir power

The Romantic notion of artistic merit is that one must plumb the depths of despair to emerge with great work — and that the finest triumphs are often born of the direst misery.
Ladysmith Black Mambazo raise their voices
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  February 05, 2010


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No identity crisis

If great art and great artists are supposed to contain multitudes, then in music, at least, pianists have the edge: 10 fingers theoretically capable of 10 different simultaneous paths for the music to take. Of course, it's not that simple.
Nando Michelin and Matt Steckler know who they are
By JON GARELICK  |  January 29, 2010
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Best in their field

The jazz scene continues to struggle — along with everyone else — through hard times.
An early 2010 harvest
By JON GARELICK  |  January 01, 2010
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Various Artists | Nippon Girls: Japanese Pop, Beat & Bossa Nova 1966–1970

Girl-group records are great and everything, yet the countless compilations out there were becoming a little hit-or-miss until 2005, when the great Girl Group Sounds Lost and Found box set finally gave this diverse genre a proper taxonomy.
Domino (2009)
By JONATHAN DONALDSON  |  December 18, 2009
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Good Fela! beats Nigerian drum

Riddle this: what's more unlikely than the fact that the current toast of Broadway is a musical about a Nigerian agitprop pop singer, or that it owes its existence to a Caucasian commodities trader from New England?
Boston and Broadway
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 11, 2009
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Snacks

The most substantial item in the assortment of dances by the Trey McIntyre Project last weekend was an oddly proportioned 20-minute meditation on climate change and Glacier National Park. McIntyre, whose company appeared at the ICA as part of the CRASH
Trey McIntyre at the ICA
By MARCIA B. SIEGEL  |  November 27, 2009


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Various Artists | Panama! 3

If you purchase a copy of Soundway’s wonderful Panama! 3 — and you should — you get two things for the price of one. First, this is a carefully curated CD of “Calypso Panameño, Guajira Jazz & Cumbia Típica on the Isthmus 1960-75” that will keep you
Soundway (2009)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  November 27, 2009
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Mixed media

Film noir has been a running theme in composer/pianist Ran Blake's work since the beginning of his career — his very first album, The Newest Sound Around (RCA, 1962), with singer Jeanne Lee, began with David Raskin's theme to Otto Preminger's Laura .
Ran Blake's Pawnbroker, Sofia Koutsovitis's pan-American roots
By JON GARELICK  |  November 20, 2009
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Rhythm queens

It’s a chilly Monday afternoon, and at the head of the lawn in front of the Christian Science Center, Zili Misik are starting soundcheck, bear-hugging their instruments to keep them warm.
The educational ecstasy of Zili Misik
By MATT PARISH  |  October 23, 2009
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No new age

Yes, this Boston jazz trio incorporates the sounds of seals, tree frogs, and crickets. Yes, one of them is a working ecologist. Here's why you shouldn't hold that against them.
Earthsound is for real
By JON GARELICK  |  September 25, 2009
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No new age

Yes, this Boston jazz trio incorporates the sounds of seals, tree frogs, and crickets. Yes, one of them is a working ecologist. Here's why you shouldn't hold that against them.
Earthsound is for real
By JON GARELICK  |  September 25, 2009


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El Mondonguito

I keep finding good, inexpensive food in Boston in unlikely places: a commercial shipyard, a construction-company lot, a mall food court, and what looks like someone's house in a residential neighborhood.
A place to dance, drink, and maybe get a little Puerto Rican nosh
By MC SLIM JB  |  July 31, 2009
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Various Artists | Comfusões

The Portuguese pun on this compilation's title suggests both "confusions" and "with fusions."
Out/Here (2009)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  July 31, 2009

Music Seen: Femi Kuti, the Loblolly Boy

On record, Femi Kuti can't help but come off as a slightly vanilla version of his mad genius father Fela (popularizer of Afrobeat music, also known for having 12 wives at once, among other things).
And Luke Kalloch
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY  |  July 17, 2009
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Pleasure principles

King Sunny Adé's music is bubbly as a tonic — a percolating, pop-infused update of the traditional Yoruba sound. "My songs are made to lift worries, so people can be happy and dance their troubles away," declares the 62-year-old Nigerian world-music sta
King Sunny Adé still brings the beats
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  July 10, 2009
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French disconnections

Last year's Boston French Film Festival featured Claude Chabrol's A Girl Cut in Two , and that, combined with this year's Chris Marker retrospective at the Harvard Film Archive and Agnès Varda's fine new The Beaches of Agnès , made it seem almost plau
The new-wavers at the French Film Festival
By PETER KEOUGH  |  July 03, 2009


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Trail of tunes

The best summer music festivals take something from the season: the smell of the surf, the sight of the mountains, fireworks, lawn seating — or, at least, fried dough.
Music al fresco at summer fests
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 12, 2009
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Various artists | Open Strings: 1920s Middle Eastern Recordings

Over the past year, Honest Jon's has released three compilations culled from more than 150,000 78s of early music from the EMI Hayes Archive: music from 1930s Baghdad, early West African music recorded in Britain, and a more general compilation that mo
Honest Jon's (2009)
By DEVIN KING  |  May 08, 2009
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Diana Krall | Quiet Nights

Jazz as the language of love is the theme of this hitmaker's 12th album, an achingly pretty tribute to the spirit, pace, and sound of the bossa nova.
Verve (2009)
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  March 23, 2009
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The Irish rovers

"The Pogues and Boston go together in ways that belong in the realm of the unexplainable."
The Pogues return to their other 'old main drag'
By MIKE MILIARD  |  March 17, 2009