Ubuntu Music is delighted to announce the signing of the Brooklyn-based pianist Richard X Bennett for the worldwide release of his next album ‘RXB3’, on 28th May 2021. The inspirations for Richard X Bennett’s lively work evolve from a wide range of unlikely sources, from contemporary visual art to ancient metaphysics influenced by years performing in India, where he recorded a series of critically acclaimed raga-jazz albums for Times Music, India’s largest record label. At points on RXB3, Richard X Bennett might adopt the triplet pattern of rhythm made popular by leading contemporary rap group Migos, or channel the vibe of pre-LP era Duke Ellington, but ultimately he follows his own muse. His pieces are short takes on the classical ‘theme and variation’, given an edge by deconstructing said themes in a whirlwind of improv, transforming this long-standing technique into ‘theme and destruction’!
Over the past three decades, as an author and photographer, an accomplished guitarist, frequent commentator for NPR’s All Things Considered, and Senior Producer for the Peabody Award-winning public radio series Afropop Worldwide, Banning Eyre has lived a fascinating professional life in pursuit of a singular passion for African music.
Giving voice to a lifetime of songs and sounds encountered on his travels, Dog Ranch Music PR is proud to help Banning to announce the official launch of Lion Songs Records, a label dedicated to amplifying the unique beauty of contemporary African music traditions and highlighting that music’s deep interconnection with popular culture in the Americas and around the world. And fittingly, as its inaugural release, Lion Songs Records is proud to present Mande Guitar: African Guitar Series, Volume 1, an intimate acoustic session by Boubacar “Badian” Diabate, one of the greatest Mande guitarists of the 21st Century.
With recent world events spurring the new evolution of their signature Finn funk-meets – Voodoo rhythms sound, Finnish-Beninese-Tanzanian afrobeat funk band The Helsinki-Cotonou Ensemble is sending a message to listeners about the importance of maintaining one’s self-respect and dignity, and staying strong through difficult and uncertain times.
Led by Finnish guitarist Janne Halonen and Beninese Singer/Percussionist Noël Saïzonou, the 8-piece Helsinki-Cotonou Ensemble is set to release its self-titled, fifth album (out May 21, 2021 on Flowfish Records). The album’s nine tracks draw inspiration from West African Voodoo traditions, Afrobeat, Jazz, Soul, and conscious Hip-Hop, with all songs being sung in Saïzonou’s native Goun language.
As an accomplished composer, producer, and bassist, as an Emmy-winning music editor, and executive music producer for film, L.A.-based Brit-transplant Richard Ford humbly maintains a resume of impressive accolades. He has worked with many Oscar-winning filmmakers on such films as Sideways, Argo, and Hidden Figures and, all this as a kind of second career after spending his early adult life as bass player for British music icons like Joe Jackson, Bram Tchaikovsky, and revered guitarist Bill Nelson.
Ford is now set to drop his latest single, a cover of The Blue Nile song “Soon” just ahead of his forthcoming album BP2, to be released May 21, 2021
Many musicians dream of making a record with a symphony orchestra, but few can afford to make it a reality. Thanks to an extraordinary ability to compose melodies that take root in his listeners’ minds and because he has patiently performed these compositions on stage to the point where they are practically a part of him, Avishai Cohen was well-positioned to execute such an ambition. Two Roses (Friday April 16th, 2021, NAÏVE / BELIEVE) is the result of a long process, which began in 2013 when Cohen recorded his album Almah, with his trio and a small chamber ensemble of four string instruments and an oboe.
Sometimes a concert is much more than music. Sometimes it’s a celebration of a special milestone, in this case the 20-year trajectory of Calle Sur, a Latin duo based in the Midwest, comprised of Panamanian Edgar East (vocals, Latin percussion, guitar, flute, trumpet, Venezuelan quitiplás bamboo tubes) and Colombian Karin Stein (vocals, guitar, Andean zampoña pan flutes, Colombian gaita flutes, Venezuelan cuatro). The COVID-19 pandemic nearly halted their 20th anniversary celebration plans, but Karin and Ed decided to start 2021 with renewed hope and the release of a 20th anniversary album, “Cancún,” an exciting variation on their usual repertoire of Latin folk and popular music infused with jazz piano.
After all is said and done, after 30 years, after a pandemic which shattered, jolted and stripped the world bare, after thousands of kilometers traveled and many more thousands of notes played and sung, what remains?
This is the question that plagues us all in the COVID era. Noa and Gil answer with Afterallogy.
Manika Kaur’s music has received overwhelming praise from the global Sikh community, and has transcended and touched the souls of music lovers from all walks of life throughout the world. Now with EK (April 16, 2021, Six Degrees Records), the album she refers to as her deepest and most accomplished recorded work to date, Manika hopes to spread the word of both her music and charitable endeavors far and wide.
While driving from Venice to Orlando, Sally Ponzio heard in her heart an unmistakable voice. It was the voice of her son Travis, who had tragically overdosed six months ago, after a long battle with addiction. She pulled over, reached for the napkin on the seat next to her, and started writing. Travis’s words of comfort and solace flowed as fast as she could write them. The words on those napkins would become the lyrics to “Remember Me” a collaboration between Sally, her jazz-pianist/composer brother Frank Ponzio, and singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Eleanor Dubinsky. “Remember Me” and its accompanying video is at once a tribute to Travis and a dedicated offering to all who have lost loved ones too soon to the epidemic of addiction.
The Tiptons Sax Quartet & Drums‘ 14th album Wabi Sabi features eleven new compositions for saxophone, voice, and drums that explore styles ranging from modern emanations of traditional African American field hollers to the hum of tires on the Autobahn, tricks for the mind, a yodeling deconstruction, popping funk for December’s doldrums, and upbeat grooves for bad people with good intentions.
“Music for doing things”. That’s the intention Kutiman had for ‘Surface Currents’, his forthcoming album of ambient atmospherics and modular experiments (drops April 2, 2021). But its beautiful sounds are deeply calming and refreshing, making this a perfect album to do nothing to as well. Composed and recorded at his home in the middle of the Negev Desert, where the solace and tranquility of his surroundings allow him to truly stretch his creativity, Kutiman’s quiet and solitary lifestyle imbues this project with an ethereal yet joyous aura.