Monday, March 05, 2007

Musical Diversions

My ipod had recently been giving me grief (it refused to stay on), so for my rides home at night I had been listening to WGBH on the radio. The evening program on weeknights is a jazz program called "Eric in the Evening". A lot of times on his program he'll have some local artist live in the studio with him. It's an interesting program - he'll talk a bit with the artist, then play some music by the artist, then talk some more, etc. It lets the listener get a nice idea of the artists background, their motivations, and of course hear what their music sounds like. These past couple weeks there were two different guests on the show that really stood out for me and I liked enough to order a CD from each of them.

Today when I got home, one of the CDs I had ordered was waiting for me in my mailbox. It's a CD from Marta Gomez. I think it's very good stuff. Having no musical talent of my own, I won't even attempt to describe her - you're better off going to her web site and listen to some samples if you are interested. All her songs are in Spanish (she was born in Columbia), so I currently have no idea what most of them are about - except for the ones I heard on the radio program where she described them. Rather than include a word-for-word English translation of the lyrics, the liner notes included with the CD have brief descriptions in English of what each song is about. Marta had read one of the descriptions (of the song titled "Who will remember me?") on the radio program and it just struck me as such a melancholy song: "This is a story of a man who works cutting sugar cane every day, as many men and women do in the world. He wakes up very early, when it's still dark, and walks many miles to the fields. He prefers singing and counting stars than thinking why he is there and what happened to his dreams, or asking himself: 'who will remember me?'"

The second CD I ordered is from Bernardo Monk. I haven't yet received it, but I heard quite a bit of his music on the radio program and really enjoyed it. To me it sounds like a cross between tango and gypsy music. It's very fun!