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Various Artists - Playing For Change: Songs Around The World

Playing For Change:
Songs Around The World

Various Artists

Available from Playing for Change.

A review written for the Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange
by Bob Gottlieb
(taoboy@cox.net)

Before I start discussing the music on this CD and DVD please allow me a bit of leeway to say that what Playing for Change is doing here is worthy and deserves the support of all music fans around the world no matter the type of music they enjoy. This crew has traveled the world high, low and all places in-between and recorded musicians playing and put then it together as a cohesive whole. On the DVD, you get to see a concert in New Orleans by some of the musicians. They had never met until the day it was recorded. It is beautiful to watch how they produce and mesh together with nary a glitch. If you listen to the disc first, you hear the music but don't see the interaction; and then in the concert sequence on the DVD you can see some of what is to come from this project.

This is truly world music, as played by musicians from around the globe, in all parts of the world. Many of the songs presented here will be familiar because they were 'hits' and popular in one way or another: from Ben E King's smash hit Stand By Me to One Love by Bob Marley, through Tracy Chapman's Talkin' Bout A Revolution right up to the stunning Sam Cooke tune A Change Is Gonna Come. All the songs are powerful statements and relate to the theme of this disc. Then there are the stunning performer /performances by those both widely known: Bono and Keb' Mo, to the astonishing presentations by those you have probably never heard of but are going to want to follow up on: Clarence Bekker (Netherlands), Grandpa Elliott (USA), Tal Ben Ari "Tula" (Israel), Venkat (India), Roberto Luti (Italy), and the Bhekani Memela Choir (South Africa), to name but a smattering of those that contribute to this CD and DVD.

What comes through on this disc is the cohesive power of music, and how we all can appreciate music no matter where we are from. You hear Arab and Israeli, black and white, known and unknown banding together with the common goal of making good music. If the musicians can play together and provide us with times of peace and beauty, why can't people put aside their differences and play/work together and make this thing called life more a work of harmony than one of strife.

Track List:

CDDVD
  • Stand By Me
  • One Love
  • War/No More Trouble
  • Biko
  • Don't Worry
  • Talkin' Bout A Revolution - Afro Fiesta (Capetown, South Africa)
  • Better Man - Keb' Mo' (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Chanda Mama
  • Love Rescue Me - The Omagh Community Youth Choir (Omagh, Northern Ireland)
  • A Change Is Gonna Come - Playing For Change Band (New Orleans, LA)
  • Stand By Me
  • One Love
  • War/No More Trouble
  • Don't Worry
  • Chanda Mama
  • The Playing For Change Foundation
  • Peace Through Music (Feature Film Trailer)
[Editor's note: You can see many clips from this project at www.playingforchange.com/episodes]

Edited by: David N. Pyles
(dnpyles@acousticmusic.com)

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Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
 

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