Saturday, May 02, 2009

Music Library: Cesária Évora, Champale, Charioteers, Charizma and Peanut Butter Wolf, Charlatans, Charles "Wigg" Walker, Charles Brown

Cesária Évora - Best Of and The Very Best of Cesária Évora. Singer from Cape Verde (where the national language is Portuguese) who exemplifies the native Cape Verdean style of music called morna, which sounds much like Caribbean swing.

Champale - Simple Days. Wry chamber-pop band from the midwest (I think) that was on Camper Van Beethoven's Pitch-A-Tent Records. Somewhere between Belle & Sebastian and Clem Snide. The first track, "Hard To Be Easy," is the standout.

The Charioteers - Keep On The Sunny Side of the Street. Vocal group active between 1930 and 1957. Dabbles in swing, gospel, and pop. I believe the doo wop groups took a lot from them. Like a lot of early 20th-century pop music, I like this for historical reasons, but too much makes me feel like an aficionado of megaphone crooners.

Charizma and Peanut Butter Wolf - Big Shots. Semi-old school rap (circa 1991-1993). Peanut Butter Wolf is the DJ and producer behind Stone's Throw Records. Charizma was his childhood friend and MC in the early 90s, and this is the album they recorded together, supposed to be the first of a long collaboration. Tragically, Charizma was shot in a mugging at the end of 1993, and this album wasn't released until 2003, after Peanut Butter Wolf found some fame. This is excellent stuff.

The Charlatans - You Cross My Path. British indie-pop band. Unoffensive, but they don't do much for me.

Charles "Wigg" Walker - "Come On In." Heavy, heavy Southern-fried funk.

Charles Brown - Driftin' Blues: The Best of Charles Brown. Hey, that's bluesy! Texas-bluesy, apparently! A big influence on a certain Mr. Ray Charles, according to Wikipedia.

NEXT: Charles Mingus! A lot of Charlie Effin' Mingus!


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