Gordon Lightfoot Book, Music and More!

The home of music journalist Nicholas Jennings, author of Lightfoot, the definitive new Gordon Lightfoot biography from Penguin Random House.

Music Review: Jane Bunnett - Spirits of Havana

Jane-Bunnett-Spirits-of-Havana
Jazz musicians have often turned to Cuba, one of the world’s hotbeds of rhythm, for inspiration--most notably Dizzy Gillespie. Canada’s Jane Bunnett fell in love with the island’s music more than 10 years ago, when the flutist and soprano saxophonist visited there with trumpeter Larry Cramer. A rising international jazz star, Bunnett and husband Cramer recently returned from Cuba with a valuable souvenir: Spirits of Havana , a prized collaboration with several top Cuban musicians. Some of the recording, featuring veteran singer Merceditas Valdés and percussionists Grupo Yoruba Andabo, is simply well-produced, traditional Afro-Cuban music. But such numbers as “Yo Siempre Oddara (Forever Stron...
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Music Feature: Ay Caramba! - Music in Cuba

Music Feature: Ay Caramba! - Music in Cuba
Behind a dilapidated storefront in central Havana, an ancient ritual is under way. An old black man, sitting in a crumbling shell of a room, instructs four initiates in the art of traditional Yoruba drumming. Beneath the glare of a dangling light bulb, Elpidio Acea barely seems up to the task. Wiry and wizened, he looks like he’d have trouble keeping a heartbeat, let alone a tricky West African rhythm. But striking two cigar-shaped sticks together, he taps out the offbeat pattern that signs the drums to begin. His students, all young women, respond with a sudden flurry of beats. Today’s lesson is the guaguanc ó , one of the most complex of all Afro-Cuban rhythms. And two of the students can’...
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Buena Vista Social Club - Lost & Found

The original 1996 sessions, featuring veterans of Cuba’s golden age in the ’50s, became a best-selling album and a celebrated Wim Wenders documentary. Now these recently discovered unreleased tracks of singer Ibrahim Ferrer, pianist Rubén González, bassist Cachaíto López and other legends brings that sumptuous Latin sound flooding back.
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Feature Article: Our gal in Havana: Canada's Jane Bunnett celebrates Cuban sounds

Feature Article: Our gal in Havana: Canada's Jane Bunnett celebrates Cuban sounds
She's been called "Havana Jane," and Canada's Jane Bunnett has certainly earned the title. The celebrated jazz flutist and soprano saxophonist has been a familiar face around the Cuban capital for years. Long before Ry Cooder made the Buena Vista Social Club a household name, Bunnett was sharing her passion for Latin music with North American audiences, taking Cuban artists on tour and featuring them on acclaimed albums of her own. But it wasn't until last November that the Toronto musician discovered the extent of her reputation as Canada's unofficial cultural ambassador. Bunnett had travelled back to Havana with her husband, trumpeter Larry Cramer, and a National Film Board crew, to realiz...
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