April 6, 1990 |
L oud is the word for the new Border Grill at 1445 4th St. in Santa Monica, (213) 451-1655. The sound is a wave that assaults you as you walk in the door. The look is loud too; it's a raucous room filled with intense colors and big pictures, a place where every wall is a canvas for this bright new look. The food itself is a bold brew that is perfectly at home in this setting. To begin, there is great guacamole and wonderful empanadas made out of fried plantains stuffed with black beans.
March 12, 2001 |
Burhan Ocal is one of the busiest percussionists in the world, shifting easily through gigs with Joe Zawinul, George Gruntz and a funk/hip-hop band with bassist Jamaladeen Tacuma. But the foundations of his art--Turkish folk and classical music--took center stage at UCLA's Royce Hall on Saturday. Leading his Gypsy Istanbul Oriental Ensemble, Ocal was a multi- instrument wizard.
November 5, 2002 |
Dating from the 13th century, "Cantigas de Santa Maria" (Songs to the Virgin Mary) are no musty antiquarian oddities. At least, not in the care of the Boston Camerata, the Camerata Mediterranea and the Sharq Arab-American Ensemble on Sunday at UCLA's Royce Hall.
December 17, 2006 |
Ali Farka Toure, "Savane" (Nonesuch). The Malian singer-guitarist's final album (he died of bone cancer in March) is one of his best, a superb example of his primal linkage of African music and the American blues. * Anouar Brahem, "Le Voyage de Sahar" (ECM).
April 16, 2001 |
The Persian Arts Society continued its quest to showcase the traditional and contemporary arts of Iran with "an evening of ecstatic music and dance" on Saturday at the Wilshire-Ebell Theatre. Titled "Nava & Namah" (Sound & Reverence) the lengthy but illuminating program featured the music of the Dastan Ensemble and the dancing of the Namah Ensemble.
June 22, 1986 |
Marion Scott is sitting in her Westwood penthouse apartment talking about a fire that broke out the previous night in her husband's aluminum tubing factory in New Jersey. Two men have been killed, and, Scott says, "he's lost everything." Still she will not fly home to console him. She is giving an interview instead, testing the strength of a new, independent life in which, like the emblematic phoenix, she is a resurrected performer--at 63, making one last bid for recognition as an artist.
May 15, 1998 |
Drawing hoots and shouts of "Ow!" at a concert grounded in medieval balladry and performed on harp, hurdy-gurdy and oud seems about as likely as a song based on ancient Middle Eastern and Celtic modes becoming a big pop radio hit. But Loreena McKennitt, who achieved the latter distinction recently with a techno remix of her song "The Mummer's Dance," managed the former feat Wednesday at the Universal Amphitheatre.
November 4, 2003 |
Guitarist Bill Frisell's latest album, "Intercontinentals," is a dramatic expansion of the musical eclecticism that has characterized his long career. Blending his jazz, blues and country roots with the music of Brazil, Greece, Mali and beyond, the album discovers compelling, boundary-free creative linkages. Surprisingly, however, the live performance of selections from the album at Royce Hall on Sunday rarely achieved a similar degree of believability.
April 26, 1999 |
Bassist Avishai Cohen is one of the early arrivals in a generation of jazz players whose musical visions reach beyond the familiar American jazz arena. On Saturday night at the Baked Potato Hollywood, he offered a too-brief glance at the potential within that global perspective. Working with the same sextet present on his current album, "Devotion" (Stretch Records), Cohen played a set that moved from straight-ahead mainstream to mixtures of jazz with Middle Eastern timbres and rhythms.
July 24, 2001 |
A superb weekend of Mediterranean-area music came to a stirring conclusion Sunday night with a performance by superstar rai singer Rachid Taha at the California Plaza. Taha never has been reluctant to stretch the limits of rai's rhythmic social commentary, and much of his set reached more deeply into the area of boundary-free rock 'n' roll.