Welcome to the October 2013 issue of Black Grooves, sponsored by the Archives of African American Music and Culture.
This month we’re featuring classical music including new releases from two celebrated opera singers—Angela Brown performing Richard Danielpour’s A Woman’s Life, and Lawrence Brownlee’s album This Heart That Flutters—in addition to Ensemble Paladino’s (flutist Eric Lamb and cellist Martin Rummel) Bach (Re)inventions vol. 1, and the duo Black Violin’s classical-meets-hip-hop album Classically Trained.
Our special two-part feature Music from Mali: The Desert Blues covers nine albums released over the past year—before, during, and after the Tuareg rebellion and coup d’etat—including Live From Festival Au Desert, Timbuktu; the bands Tartit and Imharhan on Live From the Sahara; Jeconte & The Mali Allstars’s Mali Blues; Mamadou Kelly’s debut album Adibar; the modern desert blues band Terakaft’s latest project Kel Tamasheq; internationally renowned songstress Rokia Traoré’s Beautiful Africa; Malian kora player Ballaké Sissoko with French cellist Vincent Ségal on the cross-cultural collaboration At Peace; the legendary Malian ngoni player Bassekou Kouyate and his ensemble Ngoni Ba on Jama Ko; and Mali’s queen of desert blues Khaira Arby’s first worldwide release Timbuktu Tarab.
There’s also plenty of funk and soul, including Dumpstaphunk’s Dirty Word; Global Noize’s Sly Reimagined; Earth, Wind & Fire’s new album Now, Then & Forever; Real Gone Music’s first CD reissues of classic P-funk albums by Parlet (Pleasure Principle and Invasion of the Booty Snatchers) and Larry Williams’ That Larry Williams; and the DVD Solomon Burke: Live at Montreux 2006.
Wrapping up this issue is Valerie June’s “organic moonshine roots music” major label debut Pushin’ Against a Stone; Hezekiah Walker’s latest gospel album Azusa the Next Generation; and Public Enemy’s The Evil Empire of Everything.