The Hot List: January 21, 2004

Reviews by Paula E. Kirman

Abayudaya: Music from the Jewish People of Uganda (Smithsonian Folkways Recordings): Where traditional African and Jewish music merge, this group of practicing Jews from Uganda present music of their heritage and spirituality, with up-beat hymns, children's songs, and ritual liturgy.

Habib Koité & Bamada - Fôly! Live Around the World (World Village): Koité is a unique talent on the guitar who hails from Mali, and this album is a double CD featuring many hits and live performances from him and his band. It is an excellent introduction to his music, and a must-have for fans.

Perú Negro - Jolgorio (Times Square Records): The rhythms of Black Peru come alive through this Afro-Peruvian group who present music and history through their songs.

Fiamma Fumana - Home (Outside Music): Fiamma Fumana consist of three musicians with a passion for traditional music from Northern Italy. With female vocals, an electronic flair, and respect for tradition, this album is danceable and intelligent.

Dave Swarbrick - English Fiddler (Naxos World): Swarbrick is best known for his work with the British folk grouop Fairport Convention. This CD contains some of his best-known work, featuring his unique and inventive fiddle stylings.

Desert Wind - Flute Fest (Independent): Utah-based husband and wife duo Desert Wind has released another album of spiritual themes presented through music. Andalin Bachman's flute playing soars through a musical landscape of a variety of different rhythms such as bossa nova, rock, meringue, and other World-influenced sounds.

Daniel Bélanger - Déflaboxe (Audiogram): A concept album from one of Quebec, Canada's most accomplished contemporary singer-songwriters. This is VERY different from his past work, with experimental, electronic sounds, and rapping as opposed to singing. While fans might be taken aback, it is still worth a listen.

Väsen - Trio (NorthSide): This "trio" of musicians present folk music from Sweden to an international audience. The band used to be a quartet, but they have adapted their music very well to the trio format.

Paula E. Kirman is the Editor and Webmaster of Inside World Music.