Global A Go-Go
Bill Lupoletti | Fridays 5 - 7pm
I describe Global A Go-Go as "music from around the world in the universal language of groove." In short, you could call it a world music program that emphasizes the danceable over the folkloric.
"World music" is one of those terms that everybody uses but nobody claims to like; I guess I'm that group too. My favorite definition of world music is that it's "local music from somewhere else." That's a pretty good description of my show as well: most of the artists I play aren't the least bit obscure, they're just popular somewhere other than Richmond Virginia.
I live in a metropolitan area (and a country, for that matter) that is becoming more diverse at a rapid pace. Not everybody recognizes it, and more than a few people are actively resistant to it. But resistance is futile: America has always been a multicultural nation, and now's the time for a little bit more multicultural radio programming.
I've been recording and podcasting my show since 2004, even before WRIR began broadcasting. You can find a ridiculously large number of Global A Go-Go podcasts here:
WRIR's Fall '14 Fund Drive gets underway today at 5:00 PM on Global A Go-Go. The Richmond Indigenous Gourd Orchestra, the only band I know that grows and builds its own musical instruments, will perform on-air in our Live Room. This event kicks off 12 days of some of the best radio you'll ever hear, including 26 live performances from our studios.
You can hear the kickoff event on the radio at 97.3 FM in the Richmond area, or you can listen anywhere in the world that has an internet connection by browsing over to:
Our fund drive runs through October 28. If you'd like to make a donation to support this remarkable project, you can do so by calling 804-622-9747, by visiting us in person at 1621-B West Broad Street, or via our secure online donation site at:
Thank you for your support in the past, and thank you for considering making a donation during the Fall 2014 Fund Drive!
Follow me below the fold, if you'd like, for more motivation ....
The Guca Trumpet Festival (pictured above), held every August in Serbia, is the Woodstock or the Galax of Balkan brass: huge crowds and traffic jams, motivated (possibly intoxicated) revelers getting down to their favorite party music, bands and soloists competing for prizes, impromptu gigs popping up everywhere.
This week on Global A Go-Go, it's my own little Guca: you'll hear recordings of five groups, each of which could stake a claim to being the baddest Balkan brass band on the planet. One of them is Serbia's Boban & Marko Markovic Orkestar, who will play three sets at this weekend's Richmond Folk Festival.
Also this week: ethno-tronica; the early years of the Latin rock sound; and some current West African dance hits.
At WRIR, our cup (pictured above -- no, not really) currently runneth over with great new Afrobeat and Afro-funk records. You'll hear nine of them this week on Global A Go-Go, including a track from the forthcoming new album by The Budos Band (actually pictured above).
Also this week: Sunda music from Bandung in West Java, and remembering your grandmother's stories during the Days of Awe.
In case you're wondering, yes we're having difficulties with our live stream (broadcast is fine) -- the computer that hosts it keeled over Thursday night, we probably won't have its brand-new replacement up and running until Saturday. So bear with us in the interim; maybe now is a good time to check out one of the last two weeks' shows that you missed the first time, via our listening portal:
Like thousands of people, I was captivated a couple of years ago by YouTube videos of a Thai marching band that features an incredible electric phin (3-stringed lute) player. Their music is throbbing, visceral, hallucinogenic -- it really has to be heard to be believed.
Josh Marcy saw the same videos, went to Thailand, recorded the band, and now we have the first Western (or perhaps anywhere) release from Khun Narin's Electric Phin Band (pictured above). You'll hear a nice, long selection from them this week on Global A Go-Go. And check below the fold for of one those videos.
Also this week: new Indian-inspired music by Arun Ramamurthy and Kiran Ahluwalia, chicha and salsa, and more Balkan brass and beats in preparation for Boban & Marko Markovic's appearance at the Richmond Folk Festival.
Orlando Julius Ekemode (pictured above), O.J. to his friends, is one of the overlooked pioneers of Afrobeat; his 1960s Nigerian bands the Modern Aces and the Afro Sounders paved the way for Fela Kuti's sound. Now O.J. is back, collaborating with the thoroughly uncategorizable London collective The Heliocentrics on a new recording -- you'll hear a track from it on this week's program.
Also this week: of Scotland and pirates, acid trip from Banjul to Dakar, and Light In The Attic releases Tinariwen's first two Western albums for the first time on vinyl.
Global A Go-Go's on a Balkan high right now: Slavic Soul Party (pictured above) rocked the Modlin Center's season-opening party, Black Masala returns to Balliceaux on Saturday night, and the Boban & Marko Markovic Orkestar (the world's baddest brass band) will be at the Richmond Folk Festival in October.
You'll hear all three of those bands, including a track from Slavic Soul Party's new 5-album reissue, plus more Balkan brass madness on this week's program. Also this week: Ethio-pop, Latin American big bands, and Australia's Shaolin Afronauts go Guineenne.