Category: Music

Remembering Beethoven – a Genius with a Disability By Heike Kuhn

BONN, Apr 29 2020 (IPS) – Do you recognize this man? You do, of course. It is the silhouette of Beethoven, the famous composer and pianist‎, well known all over the world. The year 2020 marks his 250th anniversary and the UN city of Bonn, Germany is very proud of its famous son, born here, next to the river Rhine. The...

THE ROAD TO KINDNESS: ENCOURAGING GREATER GENEROSITY OF SPIRIT IN AN OVERLY COMPETITIVE WORLD

The habit of comparing ourselves (and being compared) to others is not restricted to the world of music. Starting shortly after birth, our physical attributes, talents, and achievements are constantly compared to those of our peers. The age at which first words are spoken and first steps are taken can be a tremendous source of pride for parents, but often only...

Ravi Shankar, godfather of world music, a century after his birth

One hundred years after the birth of sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, his meditative reinvention of Indian classical raga music has particular resonance during the corona crisis. The loneliness that many experience during the corona crisis is a feeling that was often shared by Indian sitar legend Ravi Shankar. “I have received so much love, but my loneliness has not disappeared,” said the musician in 1977. “Somehow I got it by inheritance, and I’m carrying it all the time in my life.” Perhaps Shankar’s lonesome spirit explains, 100 years after his birth, why his music has a special relevance in this...

Lara Downes Explores the Many Resonances in Roots Music

Lara Downes | Credit: Max Barrett In liner notes for her new album, Some of These Days, pianist Lara Downes expresses the 14-track CD’s origins and significance. A line in an African-American spiritual, “Welcome Table,” provides the album’s title and the final track is an adaptation by Downes of the composition by African-American composer Florence Price (1887–1953). Following a pull quote from the refrain,...

Bay Area Musical Luminaries Plan a Tribute to Hamza El Din

Hamza El Din | Credit: John Werner There were so many right reasons why the tribute to the late Nubian musician Hamza El Din, at San Francisco’s Presidio Theatre, was planned for March 21. “It’s on the weekend of World Water Day,” notes the producer of the event, Mina Girgis, who’s also the founder of the Nile Project and a fellow at UC Berkeley’s Othering and...

THE SENSATIONAL JOSEPHINE BAKER ARRIVES IN PARIS — 2/13/20

from Seven Ages of Paris by Alistair Horne. Josephine Baker arrives in Paris and immediately becomes a sensation: “Josephine Baker … sailed for France with a party of two dozen other black musicians, singers and dancers in September 1925. … [Only] nineteen, Josephine Baker, the lithe and sensual mulatto from St. Louis, Missouri, exploded in 1925. Though so young, she was already well...

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