Music show: British composer George Benjamin on opera, Brexit & his French connection
08 February 2020 | 9:00 am
British pianist and composer George Benjamin, who has often been described as a 20th-century Mozart, is in Paris this month to take part in Radio France's 30th edition of the Présences Festival. Among all the concerts on offer, two of his operas, "Written on Skin" and "Lessons in Love and Violence", are the highlight. He spoke to FRANCE 24 about his long-standing relationship with France, plus his fears and expectations in relation to how Brexit will affect the music industry.
14 Nov 2021
This week, we chat to Australian jazz singer, pianist and composer Sarah McKenzie, who is currently touring France with a mini residency at the prestigious Duc des Lombards jazz club. She tells us more about the creative way in which she connected with musicians from around the world at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. We also meet young Parisian artist Yoa, whose bedroom pop-filled debut EP "Attente" has just been released.
13 Nov 2021
Hailing from Belgium and Cameroon, singer-songwriter Lubiana plays the kora, an ancestral West African instrument traditionally played exclusively by men. She's just released her first album "Beloved", mixing upbeat pop and afro tunes. She tells FRANCE 24's Florence Villeminot about how playing the kora helped her reconnect with her roots and embrace her mixed heritage.
20 Nov 2021
US singer-songwriter Natalie Bergman has just released "Keep Those Teardrops From Falling", a follow-up EP to her debut solo album "Mercy" on Jack White's prestigious label Third Man Records. She tells Marjorie Hache why writing this gospel folk music was cathartic following her father's death and about taking her music on the road. We also check out new tracks by Sting, Tanzania's SinaUbi Zawose and Beyoncé.
24 Nov 2021
Dominating airwaves in 2011 with his hit song [and second release] “Dami Duro”, David Adeleke made a bold statement by leading with his affluent origin story in a time when the more accepted narrative for artistes was one of coming from nothing. The uptempo song with rattling drums and electric melody on which Davido announced himself as “Omo Baba Olowo” burned his name into the minds of listeners and highlighted his individuality, energy, and sheer will to entertain. Davido talks to GuardianTV about his music, legacy, and philanthropy
11 Dec 2021
She's known for her soulful blues and folk, with radio-friendly songs whose gentle melodies often belie their powerful messages. Ayo first released her album "Royal" at the beginning of 2020, before the months of lockdown and cancelled concerts that saw her revisit the record and add some extra tracks.
For more than a decade, Tana Quartet has been pushing boundaries and reinventing the link between the past and the future over a dozen albums. Well regarded in the world of contemporary music, the French string quartet has worked with composers from around the world and performed in prestigious venues such as the Paris Philharmonic and the Villa Medici in Rome. The trailblazing pioneers are now releasing a new album of music by American composer Philip Glass. Viola player Julie Michael tells FRANCE 24's Florence Villeminot about collaborating with the famous contemporary composer and bringing classical music to a wider audience.
At the start of the pandemic, London-based Palestinian actor, filmmaker and music producer Mo'min Swaitat discovered 10,000 tapes in the West Bank while in lockdown there – music that documented a moment in Palestinian history that hadn't been heard for 30 years. He spent eight months listening to the tapes, making it his mission to digitise and re-release this window into the past. One of the tapes he found was "The Intifada 1987”, an album by Riad Awwad. Mo'min tells Eve Jackson why the discovery is so important to Palestinians.
Dino Brandão is considered one of the most promising young stars on the Swiss music scene. The half-Swiss, half-Angolan musician recently released a debut EP under his own name. "Bouncy Castle" features five afro-folk tracks and is a multicultural melting pot of sunny and yet melancholic songs. Oscillating between tropical melodies and darker folk tunes, he honestly addresses physical ailments and mental issues. He speaks to FRANCE 24's Florence Villeminot about the importance of opening up.
Last week, Young penned a letter to company bosses over the comedian's wildly popular podcast which has been condemned by scientists and doctors for spreading misinformation about the Covid-19 vaccine. The 76-year-old musician's catalogue was removed from the streaming service's library on Wednesday.
Nigerian singer Adekunle Gold speaks to Eve Jackson about his new album, "Catch Me If You Can”, which showcases the Black experience across music, art and style. They also talk about his 2015 release "Sade", a love song sampling One Direction's "Story of My Life", which propelled his career to the next level, as well as his hit song "High" with Afropop star Davido and the importance of singing in his native Yoruba.
Annette Young talks to Louisahhh, a Paris-based American techno artist about the musicians and DJs taking a stand to end a culture of sexual harassment and violence in the industry. Despite being outlawed by the government; female genital mutilation shows no sign of abating in Guinea. We take a look at the battle to end a deeply-rooted tradition. Plus born to be free; the Tunisian female bikers taking to the road to challenge stereotypes in the North African country.
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