Wu Man, Luis Conte & Daniel Ho | Our World in Song

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World: World Traditions World: World Fusion Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Our World in Song

by Wu Man, Luis Conte & Daniel Ho

Performed on instruments from the four corners of the earth, this album of 12 newly recorded folk songs is inspired by our influences as worldwide wanders.
Genre: World: World Traditions
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Frere Jacques (France)
4:59 album only
2. Three & Six (China)
3:14 album only
3. Romance (Spain/South America)
2:19 album only
4. Shosholoza (Zimbabwe/South Africa)
2:21 album only
5. Aloha 'oe (Hawai'i, Usa)
3:59 album only
6. Sakura, Sakura (Japan)
6:46 album only
7. Arirang (Korea)
3:18 album only
8. Cielito Lindo (Mexico)
4:43 album only
9. Grasshopper Teasing Rooster (Taiwan)
2:10 album only
10. The Ash Grove (Wales United Kingdom)
3:54 album only
11. Waltzing Matilda (Australia)
1:45 album only
12. Jasmine Flower (China)
3:18 album only


Album Notes
Music is a narrative of personal and cultural identity. Its universal messages date back generations and tell of experiences quite different from our modernized, amenity-filled inhabitance. Songs were conceived and shared by pioneers who chronicled everyday life, its celebrations, and its struggles. Of these, the most memorable became tradition.
Many tunes are anonymous in provenance. Some evolved geographically as well as lyrically, and can be traced to the movements of settlers across seas and continents. Others remain close to home, proudly embraced as unofficial anthems. They are familiar melodies that will continue to endure as long as we do our part to perpetuate them.
This album of newly recorded adaptations is inspired by our influences as worldwide wanderers. To further illustrate this genre- and culture-crossing phenomenon, these long-standing and revered folk songs are performed on instruments from the four corners of the earth. Intangible, yet qualifiable to be called our own, they are treasures that link the past to our present, each other, and posterity.

Notes from the musicians:

Wu Man:

I often imagine...
What would it be like if the pipa were to be mixed with instruments such as the 'ukulele or the charango? What would it sound like if I played folk songs from around the world such as Frère Jacques or Cielito Lindo on my pipa?
The folk song is one of the basic expressions of human emotion. Our lives are enriched enormously not only by these beautiful tunes, but also by the lyrics that teach us about the world in which we live, describing vastly diverse cultural customs, and even geography. Folk songs can present us with a musical map of the world!
This recording is the first ever album of pipa music dedicated to folk songs from around the world. Every song was selected with care in hope of taking the listener on a musical journey with my beloved pipa as the guide.
I was extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to collaborate with two master instrumentalists, Daniel Ho and Luis Conte. They are both talented musicians and their spirits are like mists around a magical painting that offers endless imagination. I am also very grateful for the support of Wind Music.

Luis Conte:

My introduction to the mesmerizing sound of the pipa was unforgettable. I was sitting on Wu Man's living room floor a few feet in front of her, placing microphones to record her tracks for the Taiwu Ancient Ballads Troupe CD To & From the Heart. I couldn't believe that one instrument could be so delicate yet dramatically powerful. Of course, the pipa I was listening to was in the hands of a virtuoso. As I was leaving, we talked about the possibility of recording together. What a day!
A few years prior, I had the privilege of performing with Tia Carrere at the GRAMMY Awards pre-telecast ceremony. I remember starting the song with a solo Hawaiian slack key guitar part, then a shaker joined in. I had never heard or felt a shaker create such a sublime groove in all my years as a musician. I turned around to see who was playing it, and clear across the stage was Luis Conte. I introduced myself to him backstage as a longtime fan and took a photo with him. Later that evening, Tia and I won a GRAMMY for our CD 'ikena. What a night!
Our World in Song is a musical milestone for me. Recording with Wu Man and Luis Conte was enlightening, as the chemistry of this unique collaboration brought together fascinating rhythmic elements, reharmonizations, and instrumentation. What an adventure!

Wu Man

Recognized as the world's premier pipa virtuoso and leading ambassador of Chinese music, GRAMMY Award-nominated musician Wu Man has carved out a career as a composer, soloist, and educator giving her lute-like instrument – which has a history of over 2,000 years in China – a new role in both traditional and contemporary music. Through numerous trips to her native China, Wu Man has premiered hundreds of new works for the pipa, while spearheading multimedia projects to both preserve and create awareness of China's ancient musical traditions. Her adventurous spirit and virtuosity have led to collaborations across artistic disciplines allowing Wu Man to reach wider audiences as she works to break through cultural and musical borders.
Brought up during the Cultural Revolution, Wu Man experienced many firsts. She became the first person to receive a master's degree in pipa performance from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. She was the first artist from China to perform at the White House. She has performed with major orchestras around the world and premiered works by today's leading composers including Tan Dun, Philip Glass, the late Lou Harrison, Terry Riley, Bright Sheng, and Chen Yi. She has been a key member of Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble, and is a frequent collaborator with the Kronos Quartet. Since moving to the U.S. in 1990, Wu Man's role as an ambassador and advocate for Chinese music was recognized when she became a United States Artists Broad Fellow in 2008. Wu Man was named Musical
About Wu Man
America's 2013 Instrumentalist of the Year, the first Chinese traditional music performer to receive this prestigious award.
In early 2012, Wu Man released her album Borderlands, the final installment of Smithsonian Folkways' acclaimed ten-volume "Music of Central Asia" ethnographic series. The project led her to collaborate with musical cultures along the Silk Road including Tajikistan and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in northwestern China. In September 2012 Wu Man released a documentary DVD titled Discovering a Musical Heartland: Wu Man's Return to China as part of her ongoing "Return to the East" project. In the film, Wu Man documents her expedition through China's remote regions as she unearths ancient musical traditions that are in danger of being lost among the more popular musical trends in the country today.
Wu Man's recent album of ancient Eastern tunes and newly inspired works, Elegant Pipa Classics was nominated in 2014 for Best Traditional Album at Taiwan's esteemed music award ceremony, the Golden Melody Awards.

Luis Conte

Luis Conte's genius stems from his ability to integrate the powerful rhythms of his native Cuba with the American necessities of Western pop music. His long and varied career includes numerous Hollywood film scores and mega-successful albums.
Born in Santiago, Cuba, Luis spent the first fifteen years of his life soaking up the rich musical heritage of "El Son" and Carnival. "Cuban culture is all about enjoying life, and music plays a central role," Luis says. "Music is almost like food to the people of Cuba." While rooted in the sounds of his upbringing, Luis also developed a passion for Rock & Roll, R&B soul music, jazz, and the Beatles.
In pursuit of freedom, Luis emigrated to Madrid, Spain at the age of fifteen. Soon after this brave move, another blessing in the form of travel took him to Los Angeles. Luis stayed with a cousin and attended Hollywood High School. He played guitar in several rock bands throughout his teens.
As a student at LA City College, Luis met John Monteallegre, who reunited him with Cuban drums. By the time he was eighteen, Luis was intensely interested in drumming and took up every opportunity to play and to learn. He drew his inspiration from a deep source of rhythm that he had developed during his youth in Cuba. This mastery propelled his popularity as a performer and a sought-after band member.
An in-demand musician and session player, Luis is regarded as one of the most respected and recorded percussionists in the world. He has performed and recorded with Madonna, Ray Charles, Phil Collins, James Taylor, Santana, Shakira, Jackson Browne, Sergio Mendes, Cachao, and a multitude of A-list artists.
"Percussionist of the Year" - Modern Drummer Reader's Poll (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012)
"Percussionist of the Year" - Drum Magazine (2007, 2008, 2009)
"Studio Percussionist of the Year" - Drum Magazine (2007, 2008, 2009)

Daniel Ho

Daniel Ho has a simple philosophy of presenting music with sincerity and artistry. His dedication has culminated in six consecutive GRAMMY Awards as a producer and artist. An adept multi-instrumentalist and composer, Daniel's solo 'ukulele CD, Polani (Pure), was the first 'ukulele album in music history to receive a GRAMMY nomination. A year later on piano, his CD, E Kahe Malie (Flowing Gently), received a GRAMMY nomination for Best Pop Instrumental Album.
A Honolulu native, Daniel started music lessons at an early age and spent his teenage years orchestrating big band arrangements. Under the mentorship of his music teacher, retired MGM executive Ray Wessinger, Daniel acquired the requisite skills needed to secure a viable career built around his passion. He is a prodigy of the Grove School of Music, where he excelled in composition and film scoring. At twenty-two, he became the leader and keyboardist of the acclaimed '90s contemporary jazz band, Kilauea. Upon disbanding, he toured solo as a Hawaiian slack key guitar instrumentalist, then expanded his repertoire to include 'ukulele and vocals. As an independent record label and publisher, he specializes in acoustic music and educational media.
In 2012, Daniel's album, On A Gentle Island Breeze was nominated for a GRAMMY in World Music. It was also the recipient of Taiwan's music honor, the Golden Melody Award, for Best Instrumental Album Producer. His follow-up world music release, To & From the Heart, is a collaboration with the children of the Taiwu Ancient Ballads Troupe from the indigenous Paiwan mountain tribe of Taiwan. To & From the Heart was recently recognized with a Golden Melody Award for Best Aboriginal Album.
Ever learning and evolving, Daniel continues to pursue excellence in composition, performance, audio engineering, and production. He is an enthusiastic proponent for inspiring musical creativity at all levels.



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