Soundtracking is a weekly column featuring indie, alternative, and all around amazing music – published by music correspondent Laura Cushing on Gather.com. Soundtracking includes interviews, CD reviews, band and concert news, music trivia, playlists and much more!
This Week on Soundtracking - Dee Dee Bridgewater’s Red Earth
“With age comes wisdom, spritual awakenings. Taboos are shed. Women drape themselves in invisible clothes of beauty. We become enveloped in serenity. There is no more need to prove who we are, we simply ARE. This is where I find myself today. I have closed many chapters in my life. And this new chapter that I am writing is all about embracing my ‘self’, finding my ‘roots’, seeking out my heritage,” says Dee Dee Bridgewater about her new album Red Earth.
Bridgewater is a two time Grammy winner, FAO United Nations Ambassador, host of an NPR radio jazz show, Tony-award winning actress, mother of three, and an amazingly accomplished jazz singer. She is also the first American to be inducted into the Haut Conseil de la Francophonie.
Â In her album Red Earth, Bridgewater embracess her Malian roots. Mali is a Western African nation, a republic twice the size of Texas in area. Though the country is one of the most politically and socially stable countries in Africa, Mali is one of the poorest countries in the world with over 65% of its land mass being comprised of desert. Mali is rich in culture and history – settled by the MandÃ© people and once part of the Ghana Empire, the Mali Empire, and the Songhai Empire. The last great empire fell to a Moroccan invasion in the early 16th century. In the late 1800s, Mali was invaded by France and colonized as French Sudan. Mali gained independence in 1960, and today is a semi-presidential republic. The people of Mali speak some French and Arabic, but the most widely spoken language is Bamanakan (which has its own unique alphabet, N’ko). Mali is also the location of the infamous Timbuktu, frequently refrenced as a very-far-place (as in ‘all the way to Timbuktu’). Historically a center of great learning, it is still home to a wealth of libraries and ancient texts. Dee Dee Bridgewater began her Malian journey in Bamako, the capital city of Mali. Located along the River Niger, the city’s name comes from a Bambara word meaning ‘place of crocodiles’.
Â In this place of rich history and red earth, Bridgewater crafted an album that smoothly blends African tradition with American Jazz. If you listen with an open heart, you will hear the call of the continent that gave birth to all humanity. This is a very spiritual album, the kind that makes you smile with the knowledge that you are a part of something far larger than yourself. Dee Dee Bridgewater’s Red Earth is your guide on a spiritual journey we should all undertake – finding your roots and learning your part in the extended family of mankind.
Listen and Learn with Dee Dee Bridgewater:
Join Dee Dee Bridgewater as she takes a journey through Boston to explore the black cultural heritage of the city! Listen and Learn along with DeeDee and Gather on October 11th. If you are in the Boston area, you can catch Dee Dee Bridgewater in concert on October 10th at the Cutler Majestic Theater. Gather members can get up to a 40% discount on tickets! See this article for details.
Ms. Bridgewater will also be speaking about her Malian journey on October 11th at Suffolk University prior to her heritage tour. Gather will also be hosting a special FREE Dee Dee Bridgewater concert at Tremont Temple Baptist Church at 7pm on the 11th.
If you’re going to be in the Boston area, don’t miss out!Â And be sure to share a report of your experience inÂ our Soundtracking group!
For more information:
Dee Dee Bridgewater on Gather
Listen and Learn with Dee Dee Bridgewater on Gather
My Trip to Mali – watch Dee Dee’s journey on Gather video
Dee Dee Bridgewater website
Dee Dee Bridgewater on MySpace
Dee Dee Bridgewater videos on YouTube
Dee Dee Bridgewater on Imeem
Catch Dee Dee Bridgewater live on Tour:
10/07/2007 Â Â Â
The Blue Note,
New York, NY
10/10/07 Â Â Â
(Gather members get a discount!)
Cutler Majestic Theatre
(GATHER FREE CONCERT!)
Tremont Temple Baptist Church
10/13/2007 Â Â Â
American Jazz Museum, Gem Theater
Kansas City, MO
The Kennedy Center for Performing Arts Concert Hall
10/17/2007 Â Â Â
10/19/2007 Â Â Â
Herbst Theatre – San Francisco Jazz Festival
San Francisco, CA
10/20/2007 Â Â Â
10/21/2007 Â Â Â
Triple Door – Earshot Festival
These US dates will be followed by a European tour; check the tour section of the Dee Dee Bridgewater website for further information on those dates.Â
WIN A SIGNED BEACH BOYS LITHOGRAPH FROM SOUNDTRACKING !
Here’s your chance to win a beautiful autographed Beach Boys lithograph! This lovely picture is signed by Brian Wilson, Bruce Johnston, Al Jardine and Mike Love! All you need to do to win is click here to join my Soundtracking group on Gather (it’s fun/fast/free!) and leave a comment on the Soundtracking article telling us one of your favorite Beach Boys memories. Enter as often as you like – one memory per comment. Contest runs until October 10th – winner will be announced on October 19th!
With almost 900 members and many lively discussions on music, all we’re missing is you!
Catch up on Soundtracking, read about upcoming participation opportunities, or post your own music related articles.
There’s always someting interesting and music-related to read in the Soundtracking group. We’re moderated to keep on the topic of music, but I approve content as long as it has something to do with music in some way – so please join and share your musical posts.
CDs and promotional materials, interview and/or review requests can be sent to:
PO Box 141Â Newtonville, NJ 08346-0141
Email: Soundtracking@labarc.comÂ Â / AIM: Lab Arc Designs