Sunday, February 17, 2008

Putumayo Presents - Euro Groove

Spring is returning to South Texas, without the rain we need. But the air is clear. It is great to have change, and Putumayo snuck in some mind-changing attitudes on me this week. Nearly always when I get a Putumayo album I’m expecting a dance with the moon and the planets in my backyard, with lots of sweat and pleasurable discussion. This time out, the discussion is still pleasurable, the dance still apparent, but the sweat has disappeared. This is cool jazz, with the dance centered more around the stars deep in Andromeda instead of our solar system. Still grounded, but with a weightlessness only musicians of deep thought can accomplish. The flavors are from many countries, and like all Putumayo products, the flavors defy boundaries. Most Americans associate curry with India, when in fact it is used all over the world. Samba, Brazil. Ha! Now we can samba on the moons of Saturn without blinking. Music is indeed universal. And Putumayo helps us reap the benefits.

Toufic Farroukh is living in France, but pleasures us with middle-eastern flavors with Destins et D├ęsirs, featuring the singer Jeanne Added. Jazzamor shares their South American flavors from Germany. Fiamma Fumana checks in from Italy with the acoustic flavors that both Spanish and New Orleans tinged, with a slight touch of bagpipes to keep the pleasures joyful. !DelaDap borrows from the smooth jazz flavorings of the US and Brazil while adding instrumentation that spices the music with gypsy romance. Mystic Diversions, like their name, is not claiming any precise flag to comfortably wrap themselves around but find themselves chilling out in Italy while Pati sings the song in French. It’s obvious the cultural “melting pot” the United States likes to brag about without any truth or proof is truly alive and real in Euraope, even though they don’t talk about it. They simply live it. Thanks, Putumayo! Putumayo Presents - Euro Groove