“Little Wing” was always my favorite Jimi Hendrix song. There’s something so dream-like to its words and soft groove, but with the quiet growl of Hendrix’s guitar that threatens but never quite roars.
Well, this is not your typical version of Little Wing. Jason Arimoto (http://www.myspace.com/jasonarimoto) gives us a quiet, almost meditative version, but still just that hint of something bigger rumbling beneath the surface — and only playing ukulele. Give it a listen. You’ll be surprised. I guarantee a smile on your face.
Well she’s walking through the clouds
With a circus mind thats running round
Butterflies and zebras
And moonbeams and fairy tales
That’s all she ever thinks about
Riding with the wind.
When I’m sad, she comes to me
With a thousand smiles, she gives to me free
It’s alright she says it’s alright
Take anything you want from me, anything
I moved to Hawaii a few years after Israel Kamakawiwo’oli — IZ — died, and he was still greatly mourned. Bruddah IZ was a big man with a big heart, and a soaring falsetto voice that could bring tears unexpectedly to your eyes. He was in many ways the voice of the Hawaiian nation. His songs expressed his love for the aina, the beautiful land of Hawaii, and he gave voice to the sorrows of the Hawaiian people and their delightful playfulness.
When I think of my years living among the islands, I hear IZ’s songs playing among my memories of water, sky, and green…
I just heard that Miram Makeba “Mama Africa” died a couple of days ago. Her music, emerging out of South Africa, touched the world…
A brief summary of Miram Makeba’s life, art, and work for social and racial justice…
Miram Makeba is one of those transformative artists whose vision transcends the world of her art and career. Through her music and her personality, we encounter the expansive possibilities of the human heart when it is fully applied to the struggling world.
Do yourself a favor and track down more of her music.
I first encountered the amazing voice of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan through a fortuitous accident about seven years ago. Up until that point, I had not heard of the great master of ecstatic Muslim/Sufi music of Pakistan and India known as Qawali music. At the time I was living in Hawaii, and I wanted to purchase a gift for my wife. I noticed a music store that was going out of business, so I walked in to see if I could find an interesting CD. Most of their shelves were bare, except for some miscellaneous world music CDs. I didn’t recognize any of the names. Most would have been difficult for me to even pronounce. But the photograph of this large man seemingly glowing with “rapture” grabbed my attention. I bought it knowing nothing more. When my wife later opened her gift and we sat listening, we were spellbound. I’ve been a fan ever since.
“By THE legendary original overtone-singing/throat-singing pioneer, composer-mystic David Hykes, with The Harmonic Choir. David Hykes’ visionary music, Harmonic Chant, helps us find deep harmony and healing. It transforms our abilities to listen to ourselves, to each other and to the universe.”
The music of David Hykes is beautiful and otherworldly. I find I slip almost immediately into meditation as I listen. Some aspects of his vocalizing reminds me of something I heard several years ago that was described as Mongolian throat singing. It’s like chant, but somehow more primal, getting down beneath words and concepts. Really beautiful work.
“Spoken word that weaves from Native to rock to middle eastern-twinged, with traditional vocals underlying John’s intense, forthright message.”
I love the spare guitar that often accompanies him on this recording. And the native chant. Creates a feeling of big spaces, plains, wide skies… wide, heartbreaking questions. John Trudell asks fundamental questions of what it means to be a human being, and the craziness that passes for “normal” in the world. I consider him to be a cultural healer, a prophet of sorts, someone who brings us back to ourselves, even when it’s painful. Worth a listen.
“Passionate and hypnotic world music played on the Shakuhachi and ethnic bamboo flutes.”
I was lucky enough to hear a master shakuhachi player several years ago in Hawaii. Shakuhachi is the elegant Japanese bamboo flute. This CD combines the meditative currents of the shakuhachi with more primal rhythms and sounds. Very nice.