Thursday, December 18, 2008
desert blues and the river of lamentations
Touareg now: Tinariwen (lala), Toumast (lala), Terakaft (lala)
Thanks to this post by John Schaefer on the WYNC Soundcheck blog. In partial answer to his discussion therein "when we were asking whether critics were irrelevant or irreplaceable" adding another bucket to the River of Lamentations lazily running through The State of Music Criticism in the Age of Blog Critics, I would offer I am really enjoying the three Touareg albums he recommended in his commentary on NY Times critic Jon Pareles' world music list 2008.
The artists above, the sub-genre of Touareg, and, if I'm honest about it, most things under the the loose grouping of "world music" would go largely unnoticed by me were it not for people paid and unpaid on the Internet talking about such things . And now you have maybe read about them, and maybe listened to them, and maybe liked them, and maybe even bought them. And in that lies the value of music blogs and people talking about music not because it is their job to do so, but because they like to talk about music.
I am tangentially familiar with both Pareles and Schaefer (largely because they work for respected media outlets) but I would cite neither as my personal go-to guys for solid music opinion (not that they aren't qualified to be them, they just aren't the ones I read regularly), and yet here I am with Touareg's dizzying desert blues making my day thanks to them. So thanks, even if that is not payment enough.