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Accordion Noir Global Video Tour: 2020-09-16

September 19, 2020
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Last Week on Accordion Noir Radio we played a bunch of tunes with videos. I figured I’d gather them together to share here. (Subscribe to the Apple or Android podcast so you won’t miss future action-packed episodes!)

FRENCH DUO LES ZÉOLES

I just heard of Les Zéoles this week. Amélie Denarié (diatonic acc) and Anne Guinot (piano acc) play a modern traditional style that reminds me of the Belgian groups I love so much. Les Zéoles have several great live videos, and the dramatized one we played on the show was Mary Poppins, Urban Rhapsodie 

COLOMBIAN SUPERHERO SHAKIRA

Can’t recall how I stumbled on Rob Weinert-Kendt’s Train My Ear blog, but his page about international rockstar Shakira let me in on her amazing Te Aviso, Te Anunico (Tango) from her Laundry Service (2001) record. There’s an English version of the video, but this is the Spanish cut. Who else has the range to go from Tango dancing, to surf-rock watusi, to cartoon super-hero bar-fight? Crash! Bam! Pow!

“NOITE QUENTE,” ALICE MARCONE

The great Country Queer website introduced me to Brazil’s incredibly popular sertanejo country style, which sometimes includes accordion and has several popular queer artists. It’s a great day when I learn of a whole new accordion genre! (Brazil alone is so vast that it has at least two other rich accordion styles in forró from the Northeast and chamamé from the Southern Argentine, Paraguayan, Uruguayan border region (I think).

Anyways, this week Country Queer covered trans sertanejo artist Alice Marcone, and her romantic-werewolf-accordion tune “Noite Quente” (torrid night). The video is not to be missed, so read CQ’s great review and the video we couldn’t show on the radio.

SIMEONIE KEENAINAK AND UKALIQ & KALLA from Nunavut in the Canadian Arctic

Going from Brazil to the Canadian Arctic, Simeonie Keenainak is probably the most famous Inuit accordionist. His version of the Liberty Polka opens every episode of Ukaliq & Kalla / ᐅᑲᓕᖅ ᑲᓪᓚᓗ, the Inuktitut language children’s TV show on IsumaTV (Nunavut Independent Inuit Broadcasting).

  • Title screen shot from the Ukaliq & Kalla cartoon. Background of daytime tundra, with the title in Inuktitut script.
  • Rabbit and woodchuck dancing. Background of inside a home with living room furnishings.
  • Rabbit and woodchuck dancing. Background of camp tent and supplies.
  • Rabbit and woodchuck dancing. Background of golden sky (sun below horizon) and mountains and tundra

I don’t know how to show this video 📺🤷🏻‍♂️, so click this link to watch episodes of the cartoon. The opening sequence with the quick polka has Ukaliq the rabbit and Kalla (a lemming) dancing Inuit-style with a shifting background. They keep going out on the snow, at home, in a summer hunting-camp site, and with a mountain view under the golden Arctic sky with the sun below the horizon.

The animation reminds me of the Inuit square dance tradition where musicians might play a single tune for hours, until the dancers can’t dance any more. Like Ukaliq and Kalla, the same song and dance plays inside, outside, day and night, carrying tradition wherever they go.

This cool project supports young (and grown up) speakers and learners of one of the principle Inuit languages. Inuktitut is well known as tricky to pick up. The Jerry Cans, from Iqaluit, Nunavut, have a funny song Qanuinngittug about learning Inuktitut while constantly making mistakes. Meaningful cartoons, songs, and lessons for life.

PAULINE OLIVEROS AND CECIL TAYLOR!

The last track on the show was a terrific long performance of avant-garde electronic music pioneer / accordionist Pauline Oliveros, with free-jazz icon Cecil Taylor! Wonderful that this took place and that a recording exists! It’s from the 2008 opening celebration at EMPAC, the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.

They also have a Pauline Oliveros solo performance from the same event that we didn’t play on the show. Bonus for Accordion Uprising readers!

We don’t always have video accompaniment for our show, but it seemed worthwhile to share it here. You can listen to the whole episode, and we’ll see you next week!

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