Music Action Ensemble | Foundation

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World: African Hip-Hop/Rap: Jazz-Rap Moods: Type: Compilations
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Foundation

by Music Action Ensemble

Jazz, hip-hop, groove, and folk-inspired world music from musicians around the world
Genre: World: African
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Sheen Ghar
5:13 $1.00
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2. Beautiful
8:17 $1.00
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3. Dance Joint
4:16 $1.00
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4. Share
5:16 $1.00
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5. Run
6:11 $1.00
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6. Life
5:02 $1.00
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7. Build
6:20 $1.00
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8. L.O.V.E.
9:13 $1.00
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9. King Cardamom
7:15 $1.00
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10. Release
4:18 $1.00
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Coming together from four continents and highly diverse musical backgrounds, the Music Action Ensemble embarked on a rigorous but joyous process of collective, collaborative music-making—with the added dimension to focus their compositions to address, advance, inspire, and respond to social justice issues.

In just three weeks, the result of this cross-cultural musical discovery is “Foundation,” a suite of ten boundary-breaking compositions, infusing hip-hop, Afropop, Pakistani folk, reggae, and Brazilian rhythms with jazz, contemporary, and Arabic music— eloquently speaking to the foundation that underlies the essence of social justice: human values.

Song Descriptions

1. Sheen Ghar

Sheen-Ghar is a Pashto language word that means “Green Mountain”. This song is a symbol of peace, serenity and love. The genre of this song is Pakistani folk. The diverse folk music of Pakistan in its myriad languages is rooted in the pluralist and humanist cultures of the land. The poetries of Bulleh Shah in Punjab, Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai in Sindhi, Rehman Baba in Pashto, Khwaja Ghulam Farid in Siraiki, Mast Tawakali in Balochistan and so many other universally expresses the humanist and inclusive thought present amongst the common people of Pakistan. Radicalization of society has seeped in where people have been uprooted from their folk roots.

Imagine the world without music or imagine a world where we are told what to play, what to sing and even what we may listen to in the privacy of our own homes—that world already exists. In more countries than you might imagine, musicians and composers are under threat and that threat is growing. This peaceful tune will take motivate you to think about this social issue and provides an opportunity to show solidarity with artists all over the world to encourage artistic freedom and freedom from censorship locally and globally.

2. Beautiful

Beautiful is about the conflict between what society thinks of as beauty and how we perceive ourselves. It's about believing that you are beautiful no matter how much pressure there is from the outside world to conform to a certain standard. By extension, self-acceptance and self-love becomes a metaphor and call to action for recognizing and respecting difference, and the shared humanity within all of us. It stands as a call for universal love and challenges oppression and discrimination based on one’s “identifier”—physical appearance, dis/ability, race, class, gender, sexuality, religious beliefs, and so many other that lead to judgment and bigotry. For us to live productive and meaningful lives—and enrich those of others—we first have to accept this important truth.

3. Dance Joint

Dance Joint is an anthemic song about letting go of your fears, your inhibitions, your perceived sense of limits, and embracing yourself and your inner, innate joy and creativity. It’s a meditation on enjoying the moment and celebrating the inherent joy of the human experience. Regardless of your socioeconomic background, the acknowledgement and gratitude of the present moment—and opening yourself to living fully within it—is central to leading a happy and healthy life.

4. Share

Share is a plea for unity—sharing ideas, sharing richness, sharing our hearts, minds, and our resources to helping people who are less fortunate, such as those suffering from diseases and poverty. In many countries music is something that cures people from illness. That gives joy and hope for those who feel hopeless and restless. Music is a river that flows on regardless of the profits that make us shiver. Inspired by Amen Viana’s “Mitro” composition in the Togolese language Mina (“Change”), it also reflects the value of sharing in the process of cross-cultural musical discovery and creation.

5. Run

Over 30 years of ethnic discrimination that led to the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi people in Rwanda caused millions of deaths—and a loss of identity and belonging. Being Rwandan in exile became taboo, forcing many people to change their names simply to access basic services, like education and healthcare. This song is a reflection of Teta’s life journey as an exiled, orphaned Rwandan—a metaphotr and message for millions of Rwandans—who has gained her freedom through music.

6. Life

A melodic, haunting ballad, Life is a testament to the preciousness and fragility of life—its fleeting moments of joy and beauty, its transcience. The song is a tribute to Lucas Harashima, founder Drew Foxman’s 5-year-old nephew who was diagnosed with a rare form of terminal brain cancer, diffuse instrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), on the first day of Music Action Lab 1.0. The song brings us deep inside the human experience to discovery and retrieve what is truly important.

7. Build

Build is an exploration of self and other through the challenge of violence, acts of injustice, and war—and how such threats to the relationships and lives we have built—test our character and resolve. In relationship, in community, we all must build a strong foundation for a healthy life and to realize potential, and often must continue to build and re-build during the hardest of times.

8. L.o.v.e.

L.o.v.e. is a song about, yes, love! The world is rife with animosity, ignorance and hatred, and the only way to combat that is with love. The compositions seeks to spread a little more love around, and to remind people that love can be found in hidden messages sitting right under your eyes (or behind your ears). In the manner of a mantra, the repetitive rhythm is repeated over and over, creating a trance, with the only word sung being the word 'love', broken down to its essentials, letter by letter. The rhythmic cycle, 17 beats in length, is derived from the Morse code spelling of the word 'love'. It moves through different “movements” to take listeners on a journey of seeing love from different angles and different lenses. Love can show itself in many ways. It is sometimes direct, sometimes confusing, and sometimes it can be lost in chaos, but it persists, and it triumphs.

9. King Cardamom

King Cardamom is a collaboration sparked from the relationship between rubab master Farhan Bogra (Pakistan) and Trumpeter Will Magid (USA).

In every band, musicians have their official job of playing an instrument, and then they have an unofficial job doing something non-musical. Sometimes this can be driving the tour bus or making the website; in the Music Action Lab, Farhan was the Chai master. Farhan traveled nearly eight thousand miles not just with his musical instruments, but also with a bag full of tea and fresh cardamom. Every morning he would prepare delicious Chai for anyone and everyone. After many epic Chai fueled jam sessions, King Cardamom was born.

King Cardamom is a musical exchange between Farhan's deep understanding of Pakistani traditional music, Will's eastern European roots and some good ole modern rock (and obsession of Togolese guitarist Amen Viana).

10. Release

Release is a story of self-discovery, self-affirmation and self-actualization—set amidst life’s highs and lows, it’s often those moments which challenge us most deeply that we become who we are meant to be.


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