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09 septembre 2006

Yusuf Islam set to release pop album

NEW YORK (Billboard) - Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, is eying a November U.S. release date for his first album of pop music in 28 years.

"An Other Cup," recorded on Islam's own Ya imprint, will be released by Atlantic Records; internationally, the set will be released by Polydor.

Produced by Rick Nowells (Dido, Madonna), the set features contributions from former sidekicks guitarist Alun Davies and keyboardist Jean Roussel, as well as from Senegalese vocalist Youssou N'Dour, who is famed for his work with Peter Gabriel. Islam played guitar, piano and keyboard.

"An Other Cup" will include a cover of the Animals-popularized "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" and "Heaven/Where True Love Goes," which has been tapped as the first single.

Born Steven Georgiou in London in 1947, the artist scored hits as Cat Stevens with "Morning Has Broken," "Lady D'Arbanville," "Wild World," "The First Cut is the Deepest" and "Moon Shadow." He converted to Islam and changed his name in 1977, and two years later, retired from the music business.

In 1981, Islam began writing religious material, and he has released 10 albums of drum-and-vocal performances to date on his own UK-based label Mountain of Light. That material compiled on the recent album "Footsteps in the Light." His first secular recording since 1977 came in early 2005 with a new self-penned song, "Indian Ocean." Proceeds from the download-only track were donated to victims of the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean.

07 septembre 2006

Anja Garbarek contributes to new Luc Besson Movie

Norwegian pop chanteuse inspires legendary French filmmaker Luc Besson to return to directing. Besson’s latest motion picture, Angel-A, is heavily inspired by the film’s soundtrack composed by Anja Garbarek. (...)

Strong Punkt Festival review visited Kristiansand’s Punkt Festival in late August this year and awarded Anja Garbarek a glowing review for her appearance at the vibrant festival: “…returning to the theater, singer/songwriter Anja Garbarek—the daughter of legendary ECM saxophonist Jan Garbarek—put on the most structured show of the day. Garbarek's voice is bigger than her diminutive size would suggest, and like many of her influences—Kate Bush and Peter Gabriel in particular—she has a cultivated stage presence. Hers is highly produced music in a rock/pop vein, but with a deeper sense of feeling and construction than much of the disposable pop of today—especially in North America. Structured? Yes. Accessible? Yes. But Garbarek is a significant voice on the Scandinavian avant-pop scene, and the fact that she’s had little exposure in North America is criminal.”

Signal to Zidane


de Douglas Gordon et Philippe Parreno

SYNOPSIS : Un portrait spectaculaire, magique, en temps réel et en action de Zinédine Zidane donnant au spectateur le sentiment d’être placé sur le terrain aux côtés du joueur. Tourné le 23 avril 2005 au stade Santiago Bernabeu durant un match de championnat de la Liga espagnole opposant le Real Madrid à Villareal, ce film colle aux crampons de la star du ballon rond durant l’intégralité de la rencontre, grâce à dix-sept caméras haute-définition capturant ses moindres faits et gestes.

Il y a, au tout début d’une chanson du dernier album de Peter Gabriel -Signal to Noise- un petit bruit étrange, auquel je suis surpris qu'aucun journaliste musical n’ait prêté attention. Traitant de la dépression nerveuse, de la lutte pour communiquer, la chanson (un duo avec Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan) est suffisamment explicite pour que tout y soit scrupuleusement identifié (1) (...)

(1) Selon moi, il s’agit d’un cri de perte de contrôle, de dépression, suivi d’un coup de batterie reflétant soit la sanction, soit le ... rebondissement ! La voix étant celle du chanteur.

04 septembre 2006

Harp-lute music mesmerises audience

N'faly Kouyaté from the Republic of Guinea captivated the audience with the kora, a West African harp-lute. Photo: Paul Zammit Cutajar

The haunting sounds of the kora - a West African harp-lute - echoed across the fields surrounding Verdala Palace, Buskett, on Saturday night mesmerising over 800 people who turned up for the open-air charity concert.

Percussionist Renzo Spiteri teamed up with N'faly Kouyaté from the Republic of Guinea to present an intense concert of world music, made all the more unique by the kora.

The two provided a seamless synergy and received resounding applause. The concert, in aid of the Community Chest Fund, was held under the patronage of the President and Mrs Fenech Adami. Mr Spiteri and Mr Kouyaté will be reuniting later this month to perform at the Womad Festival in South Korea, one of the biggest, most established festivals of world music.

Womad (World of Music, Arts and Dance) started in Shepton Mallet, England in 1982. It was pioneered by Peter Gabriel to bring together and celebrate various forms of music, arts and dance drawn from countries and cultures from all over the world. Some of the biggest names in the scene of world music have been especially handpicked for the occasion and Mr Spiteri is thrilled to be among them. "Taking part in Womad is the dream of every world music musician," Mr Spiteri said.

Malaria Awards Ceremony

Malaria Awards Ceremony Recipients Honored, with Life Time Achievement Award Presented to Wen Kilama at Malaria Wisdom Council Meeting Held in Benin

Malaria Foundation International honors unsung heroes and leaders in science, business, education, sports, entertainment and the media in the fight against malaria. Award recipients are listed with more detailed information and web links available at The MFI congratulates the many individuals and organizations worldwide for their current accomplishments in the fight against malaria and looks forward to its 2007 awards. (...)

(...) Celebrity of the Year: Youssou N'Dour

A Grammy Award winning Senegalese artist – for his leading performance in AFRICA LIVE: The Roll Back Malaria Concert, in Dakar, Senegal, in March, 2005, and The "United Against Malaria" concert held in Geneva, Switzerland in October 2005 also featuring friends, Corneille, Tiken Jah Fakoly, Peter Gabriel, Axelle Red, Rokia Traoré as well as other guest artists from all five continents committed to fighting malaria. The Youssou N'Dour Fund, a partnership between the singer and the North Carolina-based IntraHealth International, has since been established to continue to raise funds to prevent malaria and promote better health in Africa. The AFRICA LIVE concert film premiered at the UN and is now available to the public. (...)

03 septembre 2006

Gabriel at the Boston Observatory

(...) In one multimedia exhibit, two rap emcees appear on separate television sets and ask viewers sample questions from the U.S. citizenship test. Siblings Fernando and Jennifer Pena laughed while they watched the video. "If you ask Americans, some of them wouldn't even know the answers to those questions," said Jennifer Pena, who was born in the Dominican Republic.

Among the nearly 30 interactive displays are a short film about refugees narrated by singer Peter Gabriel and the "Wings Over Boston" aerial video tour. But some visitors come to the Skywalk for more than the view or the trivia. (...)