sun 18/08/2019

New Music Features

theartsdesk in Ramallah - the music biz turns its sights on Palestine

Peter Culshaw

Maen, a member of the rap collective Sa’aleek, was working one night in their small makeshift studio in the Qalandia refugee camp near Ramallah. He dozed off, only to find the studio door had been concreted over and he was trapped. It took fellow band members 36 hours to dig him out, but Maen didn't seem that worse for wear. As studio disaster anecdotes go, that takes some beating... 

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10 Questions for Courtney Pine: 'How do you express rage?'

Matthew Wright

Over 30 years after he made his debut as a solo artist, woodwind multi-instrumentalist Courtney Pine is still Britain’s most prominent and influential jazz musician. He had a crucial role in reviving interest in jazz in the 1980s and 1990s, and has been an important role model for black British musicians.

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Tony Banks: ‘You either do it by diplomacy or you do it by violence’ - interview

Adam Sweeting

In a career that began in 1967 and may yet have further life in it, Genesis have sold 150 million albums (and possibly more), and in their original incarnation with Peter Gabriel as vocalist were an influential force in the development of progressive rock.

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Iceland Airwaves 2017 review - political change at Reykjavík's major music festival

Kieron Tyler

Óttarr Proppé, the stylish chap pictured above, was appointed Iceland’s Minister of Health in January this year. Last Saturday, when the shot was taken, he was on stage in his other role as the singer of HAM, whose invigorating musical blast draws a line between the early Swans and Mudhoney.

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theartsdesk Q&A: Homer Flynn, spokesman for The Residents

Kieron Tyler

An encounter with Homer Flynn is disconcerting as the extent of his involvement in The Residents is unclear. He acknowledges that he speaks for the eyeball-headed quartet whose identities are unknown. As he talks, it's clear he has intimate knowledge of their creative process, their motivations and what they think. He discusses them as “they”. Occasionally the word “we” is used.

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2017 Parliamentary Jazz Awards: the votes are in

peter Quinn

Held auspiciously on the hundredth birthday of one of the giants of the music, composer and pianist Thelonious Sphere Monk (1917-1982), the winners of this year's Parliamentary Jazz Awards were announced at a congenial ceremony at London’s newest live venue, PizzaExpress Live Holborn.

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Woody Guthrie: 'The true voice of the American spirit'

Liz Thomson

Some will rob you with a six-gun
And some with a fountain pen.…

I was around 12 years old when I first heard those lines, from “Pretty Boy Floyd”, written by Woody Guthrie and sung by Joan Baez on a live album recorded on her 1962 tour of America’s black campuses. I couldn’t fathom what they meant – how could you be robbed with a fountain pen?

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h.Club 100 Awards: Music - opening up the future

Thomas H Green

The second decade of the 21st century will undoubtedly be remembered for huge innovations in accessing music, just as much as for the music itself. As well as acknowledging upfront talent, then, the Hospital Club’s h.Club 100 Music shortlist for 2017 makes it clear what’s going on behind the scenes is currently as important as what’s out front.

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Sue Steward 1946-2017: She came, she saw, she salsa'd

theartsdesk

Sue Steward, who died suddenly last week from a brain haemorrhage, was one of theartsdesk’s most loved members, her free spirit and her double specialism in world music and photography making her an intrinsic asset to this pioneering critics’ site in 2009. Her unfussy eye for colour and composition also influenced the early design of The Arts Desk and traces remain today.

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Green Man Festival review - rustic Welsh epic is wet but joyful

Phoebe Michaelides

After the gruelling five-hour coach journey to Powys, Wales, we strolled over a bridge into Glanusk Park, through two security guards, and into Green Man with only so much as a sing-song “Bore da”. Satisfied, we picked a spot and set up camp in the intense heat.

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