Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Jazz Singer's Return to Faith

Fink Like his earlier recording Lokshen, Enrico Fink has created a record that is a true treasure trove of information about the Jewish experience in Italy. On Il Ritorno alla Fede del Cantante di Jazz (The Jazz Singer's Return to Faith), the premise is to take the Jewish liturgical tradition in Italy (and in particular in Ferrara and Firenze) and distill it through Fink's experiences. The result is a fascinating work that can be highly traditional ("El male rachamim") or highly modern ("Lo Amut"). It inhabits the same spiritual ground as Robbie Robertson's soundtrack for "The Native Americans" (especially on "Eliyahu" with its dialog between the child singer and Fink), another work of passion for a culture endangered, as well as things like Hector Zazou's Songs from the Cold Seas, Tom Waits, U2 circa The Joshua Tree, cantor music and jazz, all of which come in and out of focus throughout this record creating a polymorphic work that is both contemporary and timeless, the effort behind it evident but not crushing.

Read more and listen to a song

Saturday, December 02, 2006

RIP Perry Henzell (The Harder They Come)

From the Jamaica Observer
Friday, December 01, 2006

PERRY Henzell, co-author, director and producer of one of Jamaica's first feature films The Harder They Come died on November 30th at his son's house in St. Elizabeth.

Henzell's latest project - No Place Like Home - a film about Jamaica, was set to be premiered at the Flashpoint film festival in Negril today. Yesterday, tributes were paid by politicians and persons who worked with the pioneer filmmaker.

Actor Carl Bradshaw, who had roles in The Harder They Come and No Place Like Home, described Henzell's contribution to the growth of Jamaica's cultural product as phenomenal.

"I remember him as a pioneer. He was the man who influenced Jamaica's film industry. The Harder They Come was more than a great visual as it is responsible for taking reggae music where it is today," Bradshaw said.

Perry Henzell also penned the novels, "Power Game," which was published in 1982, and "Cane," a historical drama, which was published in 2003.

Read the complete story at Jamaica Observer