Monthly Archives: February 2008

Clara Rockmore – The Art of the Theremin

There are few musicians who can really make their instrument speak. I don’t just mean sound imitation or call-and-response, but really make an instrument provide the full range of expression found in the human voice. Charlie Parker, Son House, and … Continue reading

Posted in classical, electronic, seeds | 1 Comment

Ian & Sylvia – Live at Newport

Ian & Sylvia were a bright light in the folk scene of the early ’60s. They were bright, energetic, and adventurous. They never tried to sound like rural singers, because they weren’t. They were professional entertainers who used folk music … Continue reading

Posted in Folk, fruits | 1 Comment

Pablo Casals – Early Recordings 1925-28

Before audio recording, if people wanted music in their house, they had to make it themselves. Nearly every well-to-do house had a piano, and 90% of americans played an instrument. Sheet music was widespread, popular composers were household names, and … Continue reading

Posted in cello, classical, fruits | Leave a comment

Jim Kweskin & The Jug Band – Greatest Hits

This double album collects most of the best tracks from the Jim Kweskin Jug Band’s 3 albums for Vanguard records: Self-Titled (Unblushing Brassiness), Jug Band Music, and See Reverse Side for Title. The title is a little misleading, because the … Continue reading

Posted in fruits, Jug Band | 7 Comments

TransMongolia – Gesang des Himmels

There is no experience akin to hearing throat singing for the first time. It is such a foreign sound to anyone who has not grown up in the deserts of central Asia. And yet it resonates deep within us, because … Continue reading

Posted in fruits, throat singing | 2 Comments

Cannon’s Jug Stompers – Best Of

Cannon’s Jug Stompers was one of the first jug bands, and one of the best. Their sound is more bluesy and archaic than some of the other, more urban and jazzy jugbands. They were kind of like the Memphis Jug … Continue reading

Posted in Blues, Jug Band, Roots | 4 Comments

Joseph Spence – Bahamian Guitarist

There’s no one quite like Joseph Spence. His music is utterly his own. It consumes folk, blues, jazz, calypso, hymns, sea chanties, children’s game songs, and tin pan alley pop, emerging an idiosyncratic entity in the form of insanely syncopated … Continue reading

Posted in Guitar, seeds | 3 Comments

Taj Mahal & Toumani Diabate – Kunlanjan

First off, let me say that this album has a special place in my heart. I was living in Florence, studying art, and I had left all my music in the US. But to my surprise, the school I was … Continue reading

Posted in Blues, Branches, fruits, world | 5 Comments

Geoff Muldaur – Sleepy Man Blues

“There are only three white blues singers — Geoff Muldaur is at least two of them.” — Richard ThompsonWell, pretty much everything I said about Dave Van Ronk applies to Geoff Muldaur. Both have deep roots in blues and early … Continue reading

Posted in Blues, fruits | 3 Comments

Dave Van Ronk – Sunday Street

Dave Van Ronk isn’t very well-known to most people. But most of those who have heard him really treasure his music. Among folk and blues guitarists, he’s something of a god, or a grandfather (are the two not the same?). … Continue reading

Posted in Blues, Folk, fruits, Guitar, ragtime | 6 Comments