Category Archives: Music

Notebook

I sit in the front of the car with Elke and doze as we listen to David Hasselhof  songs on Bob! Radio (fuck me) and head to Potsdam for a live radio interview on the way to Berlin. At the … Continue reading

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Nige swings George

My review of Nigel Kennedy’s Gershwin gig at Ronnie Scott’s: Fist-bumps all round. Nigel Kennedy never disguises his pleasure at being on the same bandstand where, as a teenager, he once played alongside his mentor, Stéphane Grappelli. Nearly half a … Continue reading

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Bob Marley, Middle East-style

He would have been 73 today.  Somewhere in one of my files I still have the special edition of West Indian World newspaper that I helped turn out in the days after his death in 1981.  It was hard to … Continue reading

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Folk fail & thrill

There was a standing ovation at the end. I had the feeling that I was the only person in the Union Chapel who didn’t enjoy The Transports: Its heart is in the right place, and the singing is full of … Continue reading

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The listener

Nick Coleman’s book on the singers and musicians who mean the most to him has its pretentious moments, but you’ll be rewarded if you make it through to the end.  From my review in The Times: All of us who … Continue reading

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Mr S.

A familiar face in the foyer at Ronnie Scott’s.  The image is based on a photo by Carl Hyde. You can see more of his work here.

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Notebook

“And the song,” I asked. “Is it of your own composition?” “Yes, man. In my island I’m noted for my celebrated performance. It’s your pleasure to meet this evening no less a one than Mr Lord Alexander in person.” And … Continue reading

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Barbara remembered

From my albums of the year list: classical pianist Alexandre Tharaud’s ethereal homage to the singer-pianist known simply as Barbara. This year marks the twentieth anniversary of her death. Hindi Zahra, Rokia Traoré, Jane Birkin, Vanessa Paradis and Juliette Binoche … Continue reading

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The best world & roots albums of 2017

Close harmonies from Alabama, folk songs from Réunion and the rest of my choices in today’s Sunday Times. Full details here. 1 THE SECRET SISTERS: You Don’t Own Me Anymore (New West) 2 DANYEL WARO: Monmon (Buda Musique) 3 ALEXANDRE … Continue reading

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A new voice

Meeting Elida Almeida was one of the highlights of my trip to Cape Verde earlier this year. You can hear more from her on “Kebrada”, my world music album of the week in the Sunday Times.  

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