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14 janvier 2007

Real World Night, Jan 31

from Sunday Herald (Scotland)

Celtic Selections

...Real World Night, Jan 31, Old Fruitmarket, 9pm The festival goes global in glittering style, as Peter Gabriel's label hosts a night of international sounds, with appearances by Skip "Little Axe" McDonald, dub guru Adrian Sherwood, Asian underground pioneers Joi, African singer-songwriter Daby Toure and Uzbekistani songstress Sevara Nazarkhan...

The man in charge

...Celtic Connections 2007 sees a substantial increase in artists from the contemporary Americana scene, including major figures such as Rosanne Cash, Bela Fleck, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Cowboy Junkies, plus a wealth of newer acts, many making their Scottish debut. Perhaps more controversial, though, is Shaw's decision to embrace world music under the festival's already capacious umbrella. Key highlights here include the Real World night, curated by Peter Gabriel's celebrated label and featuring artists from Africa, Uzbekistan and the Asian underground scene. Then there's the Burns Mela, an Asian-themed extravaganza in honour of the national bard, and Flutes Of The World, both of which feature the legendary North Indian flute virtuoso Hariprasad Chaurasia.

"I know some people might see this as stretching things too far,"
he says, "but I've always been a big advocate of the idea that Celtic music is world music, too, in the same way that Real World see no contradiction in signing Scottish artists like Martyn Bennett and the Afro Celts. Conversely, in the case of someone like Hariprasad Chaurasia, first and foremost he's just one of the most gifted, emotive and soulful flute players you'll ever hear, but he's also been a major influence on Irish and Breton players.

"And if we were having a heated cultural discussion about it, there's plenty of historical evidence that the Celts travelled as far as North Africa and even India, so you could point to a connection there. "There are also really fascinating similarities between aspects of African and Gaelic music, particularly in the rhythms and melodies of their work songs, and also in the language. In Mali, for instance, some of their tribal words for elemental things like moon', sun', river', land' and boat' are almost phonetically identical to Gaelic: nobody really knows why, but I like to think there's some ancient ancestral link involved."...

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