Music the artform and artists

The scratch orchestra of Kinshasa

The members of the Orchestre Symphonique Kimbanguiste – the world's only all-black orchestra – are self-taught and started out playing homemade instruments. Now the band's founder is to be given a major international accolade.

The Guardian

The Italian wizard re-inventing 'The Four Seasons'

Can there be any more hackneyed piece in the classical repertoire than Vivaldi's Four Seasons? It's the go–to Baroque piece for every music festival, it's been pillaged endlessly for film soundtracks and recorded far too often.

The Telegraph

A DIY Guide To The History Of Women In Jazz

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has issued a proclamation declaring Friday "Women in Jazz Day" — an attempt at cultural reform that's bound to enjoy the same resounding success as banning oversizing sodas.


Mali’s Legendary Musicians Struggle to Be Heard in the Shadow of War

Before the coup d'état that overthrew an elected government, before the French-led war to oust Islamist rebels who had taken over much of the country, Mali was perhaps best known internationally for something else: its music.

Time World

Out of Egypt’s Chaos, Musical Rebellion

One washed towels in a barbershop. The other sold fast food. Some nights, they would grab the microphones at outdoor weddings and try out raps they had written, only to earn a hail of stones.

The New York Times

Youssou N'Dour wins Sweden's Polar Music Prize

"A West African griot is not just a singer, but a storyteller, poet, singer of praise, entertainer and verbal historian. Youssou N'Dour is maintaining the griot tradition and has shown that it can also be changed into a narrative about the entire world," the jury said in its citation.

Agence France Presse

Classical Music Reinvented (Again)

Two weeks ago, the Los Angeles Philharmonic hosted its Brooklyn Festival, providing a West Coast showcase for the music of some of America's hottest young composers, dozens of whom have congregated in the New York borough over the past decade.

San Francisco Classical Voice

Jazz’s Skinny Stepchild

In search of some live Brazilian music a few months ago, I found my way to Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, in the Time Warner Center, where the Brazilian percussionist Duduka Da Fonseca was leading a quintet.

The New York Times

Janos Starker, A Master Of The Cello

Cellist Janos Starker has died at 88, ending a life and career that saw him renowned for his skills as a soloist, his prodigious work with orchestras, and his commitment to teaching.


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