Friday: Off to take on the task of the day.
I hope this finds you in some place of harmony.
I am struggling a bit with that myself right now.
Todays’ edition features a Portland fixture, Timbuktunes.
We have some nice poetry, and some fun links.
Have a good weekend…
The Solstice is nearly upon us.
On The Menu:
The Poetry of Lao Tzu
File Under: Twisted Kitty!
I will let you in on one of the best kept secrets of the best city on the left coast: Timbuktunes. Again, my friend Morgan introduced me to this most delightful of music stores. I walked in; and I found musics from around the world I had no idea about.
It is a great place for all kinds of music. World, American Root genres, avant-garde, classical, jazz and experimental musics…
As Andy Hosch, the owner and founder of Timbuktunes says: “Timbuktunes hopes that through sharing the love of music, it can help introduce people to new worlds of sound. World music can help to combat the xenophobia that plagues our society. We can celebrate cultural diversity through sound. Music can be highly instrumental in breaking down cultural barriers. In music, there exists a common thread of humanity that transcends political, social and religious differences.”
You feel this when you come in the door. Posters, material on the walls celebrate a vibrant world culture. Music from Andalusia, Malay, China, South America…
It is a great place to find what you may not know that you needed/wanted to hear…
Some suggestions from Timbuktunes for music:
Rachid Taha (Algeria) /Diwan 2 I actually obtained this the day it came in. Excellent. If you like his work “Bara Bara”, you’ll find this album very satisfying. The fusion elements in the music are exceptional, as well as the use of various languages. A wonderful, danceable melange. Recommended!
Rahim AlHaj (Iraq) / When the Soul is Settled: Music of Iraq
As received from his teachers and transformed by his considerable musical gifts and life experience, Rahim Alhaj carries on a significant strand of Iraqi musical tradition toward future generations – in his own way, in his own time. Alhaj studied music in Baghdad with Munir Bashir and other great teacher-performers. His extended improvisations on the oud, accompanied on Near Eastern percussion by Souhail Kaspar, include uniquely Iraqi pieces. Together they represent a proud tradition’s meeting with modernity.”
Tartit / Abacabok (Mali)
“As others have overtaken them, it’s easy to forget that Tartit were pioneers among the new generation of desert blues ensembles. But there’s a grave celebration in their mostly acoustic sound that’s so thoroughly rooted in both place and tradition, with singers backed largely just by drums and handclaps, with a one-string fiddle and three-string lute for melody. This is what they offer on the opener, “Tabey Tarate,” with male and female voices trading off in call and response over the rhythm. Abacabok sounds wonderfully spontaneous, as if they’d sat down with the producer and suddenly decided to make the record on the spot, drafting in occasional guests to offer change-ups, as electric guitar and bass do on “Ansari,” where the electricity brings them very close to Tinariwen. But that seems like a commercial concession; it’s when they’re most stripped-down that they shine brightest. Even a luminary like Afel Bocoum doesn’t do anything to enhance the purity of their sound. It might seem too stark for some ears, but there’s genuine beauty here.” ~ Chris Nickson
One Night @ the 1001, Vol 1: Moroccan Music Recorded by Brion Gysin
“Reissue of this long unavailable 1998 album, with new cover artwork. As surrealist painter, poet, novelist, audio experimenter, inventor of the Dream Machine, and favorite collaborator of William S. Burroughs, Brion Gysin would influence the most creative minds of the ’60s and ’70s. In 1954, Gysin launched his 1001 Nights club in Tangier. In his mythic restaurant that stayed opened only a few months, Gysin invited the best traditional Moroccan musicians to perform all night long. The first CD of this document is what the lucky Western and Moroccan customers of the interzone could hear at the time: a varied selection of pure traditional and trance music (along with other Joujouka master musicians, Bachir Attar’s father). Joujouka utilizes the technique of circular breathing backed by trance-inducing rhythms and sounds from the rhaita, reed flutes and small drums. A decade before Brian Jones brought this timeless music to the world, this is a unique document recorded by the inventor of the cut-up method himself, digitally remastered by Brion’s recordings heir Ramuntcho Matta and includes Paul Bowles’ exclusive introduction. The second volume of this double CD document is based on a spoken word tape called Dilaloo that is a precise description — written and read in 1956 by Brion Gysin “Master Brahim” himself — of an initiation ceremony in the village of Jajouka. Ramuntcho added a quiet electronic music background generated by a computer algorithm program that he created in Gysin’s random permutative spirit. Between the music of trance and the raw cry of being, we see the process of transformation at work. Trust your bones and put your faith in the Third Mind! Rare archives filed in the Aural Documents collection.”
Andy Hosch – Timbuktunes Founder
Master Musicians of Joujouka (Morocco) / Boujeloud
“The Master Musicians of Joujouka are often credited with being the first “world music” group. The Joujouka music for Boujeloud, or the Father of Skins, is frantic and has several movements which would equate to a symphony or the score of an opera if it were European classical music. The festival and ritual originate in the worship of the God Pan. In 1994, Frank Rynne began a two year long project recording the Master Musicians of Joujouka in their village. Sub Rosa released two CDs from these recordings, Joujouka Black Eyes and Sufi to critical acclaim in 1995 and 1996, respectively. This is the third and final CD from these intimate recordings to be released by Sub Rosa. Boujeloud contains several different renditions of the ritual music Boujeloud. Each version has a widely different character which is determined by the combination of musicians and the spontaneous improvisation of the lead players. Tracks 1, 2, 6, and 8 are flute versions from various combinations of the Masters, while track 3 features the intense sound of the massed rhaitas playing the ritual. There are also songs which are used in lead up to the ritual, and songs that the musicians use to drive Boujeloud/Pan out of the village. The musicians recorded on this CD span four generation of Joujouka masters. Master musician Mujehid Mujdoubi was 83 years old when he recorded his music for this CD: though he had lost the ability to play the double-reed rhaita, Mujehid’s lira playing fully demonstrates the musical dexterity which seventy years of playing honed to perfection. The core group who still live and play in the village are widely represented on this CD. The different versions of “Boujeloud” and the related songs allow the listener to experience the melodies and the improvisational nature of Joujouka music played live in its natural setting. These recordings are an intimate and unique experience.”
Visit Timbuktunes World Music site if you are curious, or would like to order. The Website is located at: WWW.Timbuktunes.com
If you are in Portland and want to stop by…
Timbuktunes World Music is located at:
4726-B SE Hawthorne / Portland, OR 97215 / (503) 239-0179
The Poetry of Lao Tzu
Beauty and ugliness have one origin.
Name beauty, and ugliness is.
Recognizing virtue recognizes evil.
Is and is not produce one another.
The difficult is born in the easy,
long is defined by short, the high by the low.
Instrument and voice achieve one harmony.
Before and after have places.
That is why the sage can act without effort
and teach without words,
nurture things without possessing them,
and accomplish things without expecting merit:
only one who makes no attempt to possess it
cannot lose it.
The Tao that can be trodden is not the enduring and unchanging Tao.
The name that can be named is not the enduring and unchanging name.
(Conceived of as) having no name,
it is the Originator of heaven and earth; (conceived of as) having a name,
it is the Mother of all things.
Always without desire we must be found,
If its deep mystery we would sound;
But if desire always within us be,
Its outer fringe is all that we shall see.
Under these two aspects, it is really the same;
but as development takes place, it receives the different names.
Together we call them the Mystery.
Where the Mystery is the deepest is the gate of all that
is subtle and wonderful.
The Tao is (like) the emptiness of a vessel;
and in our employment of it we must be on our guard against all fullness.
How deep and unfathomable it is, as if it were the Honoured Ancestor of
We should blunt our sharp points, and unravel the complications of things;
we should attempt our brightness, and bring ourselves into agreement with the obscurity of others.
How pure and still the Tao is, as if it would ever so continue!
I do not know whose son it is. It might appear to have been before God.
The valley spirit dies not, aye the same;
The female mystery thus do we name.
Its gate, from which at first they issued forth,
Is called the root from which grew heaven and earth.
Long and unbroken does its power remain,
Used gently, and without the touch of pain.