sounds of the home grown

June 21st marks not only the beginning of summer in Canada – it is also our National Aboriginal Day.  In honour of the 20th anniversary of our country’s re-awakening, Wandering Rhythms this week presents an hour of diverse and sublime aboriginal music from Canada (first half) and worldwide (second half).  From traditional drumming to hip hop and many burgeoning scenes in between, these cultures are reclaiming their power and moving into the new age with power and purpose.

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Pioneering Women in Music

In all styles, in all places, there are strong women who craft songs just as well as the fellas. In celebration of International Women’s Day 2016, we present a playlist of great female composers and performers – from the big band era to the present – who breached the status quo to share their art, and in the process have divined a more equal world:

On the Edge of Earth’s Darkest Canyon

Deeper than the Himalayan Mountains are tall, the Mariana Trench is the most mysterious, wettest corner of our incredible planet.  And the Northern Mariana Islanders call this place their backyard.  If you ever get a chance, you gotta try the fish and chips..

dragonfishhh

Dragonfish smiling for camera

In a bizarre chain of historical events, this far-flung chain of islands has at various points been under Spanish, German, Japanese, and American control.  And if you want United States citizenship, just go there to get born!

house of taga, tinian

“House of Taga” on Tinian Island.  What ancient wizards built this?

Despite a rapidly growing immigrant population (particularly Filipino), the music of the Mariana Islands remains deeply rooted in the native Chamorro language and culture. Easy-going vibes and beautiful melodies abound, in a tongue that seems to be a lovely hybrid of Micronesian and Spanish.  Can you get any smoother?!

Tambien, the first hour’s Global Mix:

Play for Human Rights Day

Good people, today is International Human Rights Day, where we step back to look at the progress we have made in our quest for equality and justice on this planet.  It’s easy to look at all the problems worldwide, murders and wars, and settle on hopelessness.  But in the grand old scheme of things, we are making progress (or maybe more accurately, slowly returning to a state of consciousness that we had reached thousands of years ago, and lost).

And music!  Well this is one thing we can count on to inspire and heal the crazy planetarians.  For this important moment, I present you with an hour of renegade music of many vibes – sonic proof that the madness can always strengthen our resolve to be more loving and more alive.

Then we switch scales completely and visit the Saudi Arabian music scene, where some artists must hide in secrecy, risking their lives for their art form and their belief in freedom of speech.