BBC Music On The World Service With Cerys Matthews [6 Music]

Episodes

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01Sir Tom Jones20160726

01Sir Tom Jones20160726

Cerys Matthews takes listeners on a musical journey with the help of Sir Tom Jones.

01Sir Tom Jones20160726

The first in a week long series of programmes that were first broadcast on the BBC World Service.

Cerys Matthews takes listeners on a musical journey with the help of Sir Tom Jones, a charismatic, natural-born performer for whom "singing is like breathing". One of Wales' greatest ever cultural exports, he got his first record deal in 1964. And, he has been entertaining the world ever since, adapting as the musical landscape changed, and selling 100 million records along the way.

Beginning with his early days in Pontypridd, South Wales - long before he became a professional singer - Sir Tom remembers dancing along to the radio in his mother's arms and how his Uncle Snowy taught him how to overcome childhood shyness and become the compelling performer he was destined to be.

A huge music fan, Sir Tom also reveals the rich musical mix that has influenced his extensive body of work, from the Yiddish ballad loved by his father, to the exciting new Rock 'n' Roll music that turned his teenage world upside down. We also hear about some of the legendary musicians with whom he has "let it rip", from the peerless star of syncopation Jerry Lee Lewis, to a like-minded Dusty Springfield, and the King of Rock 'n' Roll Elvis Presley.

01Sir Tom Jones20160726

The first in a week long series of programmes that were first broadcast on the BBC World Service.

Cerys Matthews takes listeners on a musical journey with the help of Sir Tom Jones, a charismatic, natural-born performer for whom "singing is like breathing". One of Wales' greatest ever cultural exports, he got his first record deal in 1964. And, he has been entertaining the world ever since, adapting as the musical landscape changed, and selling 100 million records along the way.

Beginning with his early days in Pontypridd, South Wales - long before he became a professional singer - Sir Tom remembers dancing along to the radio in his mother's arms and how his Uncle Snowy taught him how to overcome childhood shyness and become the compelling performer he was destined to be.

A huge music fan, Sir Tom also reveals the rich musical mix that has influenced his extensive body of work, from the Yiddish ballad loved by his father, to the exciting new Rock 'n' Roll music that turned his teenage world upside down. We also hear about some of the legendary musicians with whom he has "let it rip", from the peerless star of syncopation Jerry Lee Lewis, to a like-minded Dusty Springfield, and the King of Rock 'n' Roll Elvis Presley.

Cerys Matthews takes listeners on a musical journey with the help of Sir Tom Jones.

02Allen Toussaint20160727

02Allen Toussaint20160727

Cerys Matthews pays tribute to musician, songwriter and producer Allen Toussaint.

02Allen Toussaint20160727

This week 6 music features a selection of shows that were first broadcast on the BBC World Service.

In this programme Cerys Matthews pays tribute to the musician, songwriter, and production genius Allen Toussaint, a key figure in the development of the sound of New Orleans for over 50 years.

A huge fan, Cerys was looking forward to interviewing Allen when he visited the UK for the London Jazz Festival in November. Sadly, Allen died whilst on tour in Spain and, so, the planned profile becomes a tribute to his incredible career.

With a precocious talent, and curious ear, Allen soaked up the sounds of his native city and childhood home. And from the second line of brass following Jazz funerals; and the percussive beats of the Mardi Gras Indians; to the blues tracks on the radio; and the Grieg Piano Concerto he learnt by ear, Allen was open to all genres of music.

But he didn't just assimilate these influences, he was a true pioneer, and when inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in 1998, he was praised for keeping pace with musical developments and not allowing New Orleans' old-school R&B traditions to die out.

He may not have been the household name he deserved to be but the roll call of artists he worked with - or who covered his compositions - is testament to his status as a musician's musican. Snooks Eaglin', Irma Thomas, The Meters, Glen Campbell, Patti LaBelle, Herb Alpert, Otis Redding, The Band, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello - and many, many more - they all contribute to the legacy of the Allen Toussaint sound.

02Allen Toussaint20160727

This week 6 music features a selection of shows that were first broadcast on the BBC World Service.

In this programme Cerys Matthews pays tribute to the musician, songwriter, and production genius Allen Toussaint, a key figure in the development of the sound of New Orleans for over 50 years.

A huge fan, Cerys was looking forward to interviewing Allen when he visited the UK for the London Jazz Festival in November. Sadly, Allen died whilst on tour in Spain and, so, the planned profile becomes a tribute to his incredible career.

With a precocious talent, and curious ear, Allen soaked up the sounds of his native city and childhood home. And from the second line of brass following Jazz funerals; and the percussive beats of the Mardi Gras Indians; to the blues tracks on the radio; and the Grieg Piano Concerto he learnt by ear, Allen was open to all genres of music.

But he didn't just assimilate these influences, he was a true pioneer, and when inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in 1998, he was praised for keeping pace with musical developments and not allowing New Orleans' old-school R&B traditions to die out.

He may not have been the household name he deserved to be but the roll call of artists he worked with - or who covered his compositions - is testament to his status as a musician's musican. Snooks Eaglin', Irma Thomas, The Meters, Glen Campbell, Patti LaBelle, Herb Alpert, Otis Redding, The Band, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello - and many, many more - they all contribute to the legacy of the Allen Toussaint sound.

Cerys Matthews pays tribute to musician, songwriter and producer Allen Toussaint.

03Mulatu Astatke20160728

03Mulatu Astatke20160728

As part of 6 music's celebration of World Music and the WOMAD festival listeners have chance to hear a series of shows first broadcast on the World Service.

In this show Cerys is in conversation with musical legend Mulatu Astatke, a multi-instrumentalist, composer and cultural ambassador who, in his 70s, is still busy touring and sharing his funky vibes with the world.

Born in the western Ethiopian city of Jimma in 1943, Mulatu was all set for a career in engineering when he headed to college in North Wales. But he quickly discovered a natural aptitude for music that would lead to further studies in London, Boston.

Mulatu's music is firmly rooted in his native Ethiopia. But, fiercely intellectual and creative, he's travelled the world to further his musical education. Along the way, he's picked up new instruments, soaked up different rhythms and sounds, and created his own musical Ethio-Jazz.

Mulatu talks to Cerys about switching from science to music; how he learned to combine traditional Ethiopian music with American jazz and Latin rhythms; and performing with his hero Duke Ellington.

With music from Mulatu himself. plus Dave Pike, Nas & Damien Marley, Frank Holder, Duke Ellington and more.

03Mulatu Astatke20160728

Cerys Matthews talks to musician, composer and cultural ambassador Mulatu Astatke.

03Mulatu Astatke20160728

Cerys Matthews talks to musician, composer and cultural ambassador Mulatu Astatke.

As part of 6 music's celebration of World Music and the WOMAD festival listeners have chance to hear a series of shows first broadcast on the World Service.

In this show Cerys is in conversation with musical legend Mulatu Astatke, a multi-instrumentalist, composer and cultural ambassador who, in his 70s, is still busy touring and sharing his funky vibes with the world.

Born in the western Ethiopian city of Jimma in 1943, Mulatu was all set for a career in engineering when he headed to college in North Wales. But he quickly discovered a natural aptitude for music that would lead to further studies in London, Boston.

Mulatu's music is firmly rooted in his native Ethiopia. But, fiercely intellectual and creative, he's travelled the world to further his musical education. Along the way, he's picked up new instruments, soaked up different rhythms and sounds, and created his own musical Ethio-Jazz.

Mulatu talks to Cerys about switching from science to music; how he learned to combine traditional Ethiopian music with American jazz and Latin rhythms; and performing with his hero Duke Ellington.

With music from Mulatu himself. plus Dave Pike, Nas and Damien Marley, Frank Holder, Duke Ellington and more.

04Peggy Seeger20160729

In a programme first broadcast on the BBC World Service Cerys Matthews talks to one of the most influential figures in modern folk music, Peggy Seeger.

Whilst travelling around the world in her 20s, Peggy Seeger received a phone call from the folk song collector Alan Lomax, who was in London and needed a banjo player. She eventually settled in London, where she met Ewan MacColl, a future musical partner, collaborator, and husband.

They performed together, organised regular club nights, branched into political theatre and activism, and created the Radio Ballads for BBC Radio, an innovative project that used real voices to tell stories about the working class British.

Since then Peggy has made over 20 solo records and contributed to more than one hundred recordings with other performers. In her 80th year, these energetic endeavours continue apace. In 2015 she won a prestigious BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Swim To The Star, an original song about the sinking of the Titanic. That same year, she helped mark the centenary of Ewan MacColl's birth, and between gigs and lectures, she has somehow found time to write her memoirs.

Amongst the incredible stories, we hear some of Peggy's own compositions, as well as recordings from Ewan MacColl and those of her brother Pete.

Cerys Matthews celebrates the career of Peggy Seeger.

05Baaba Maal20160731

Continuing 6 music's coverage of the WOMAD festival Cerys is in conversation with one of this year's headliners, the Senegalese music Baaba Maal. In a programme first broadcast on the BBC World Service she talks to an artist who has become known for his fusion of pop and rock with African styles and has released over 11 albums in his career, spanning everything from traditional acoustic styles to big pop productions.

From modest beginnings as the son of a fisherman in the town of Podor in northern Senegal, Baaba Maal broke the mould from an early age, deciding to follow his passion for music even though he was not born into the traditional musical caste. But despite the odds Baaba has grown to be a household name, wowing audiences with his electrifying voice and live performance, curating his own festival in Senegal and collaborating with Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, Tony Allen, U2 and producer John Leckie.

Now he uses his global fame to campaign for human rights while continuing to release his own brand of genre-hopping music and he shows no sign of slowing down.

Over the course of an hour Baaba takes us back to a childhood spent listening to his fatherâ€TMs call to prayer and his motherâ€TMs folk songs along the banks of the Senegal river. We hear about his early adventures across West Africa learning his trade alongside long-time collaborator Mansour Seck, meeting Chris Blackwell of Island records and his rise to fame in the 90s, and why he considers it his responsibility to use music as a tool for change in Africa.

Cerys Matthews interviews Baaba Maal, known for fusing pop and rock with African styles.

Continuing 6 music's coverage of the WOMAD festival Cerys is in conversation with one of this year's headliners, the Senegalese music Baaba Maal. In a programme first broadcast on the BBC World Service she talks to an artist who has become known for his fusion of pop and rock with African styles and has released over 11 albums in his career, spanning everything from traditional acoustic styles to big pop productions.

From modest beginnings as the son of a fisherman in the town of Podor in northern Senegal, Baaba Maal broke the mould from an early age, deciding to follow his passion for music even though he was not born into the traditional musical caste. But despite the odds Baaba has grown to be a household name, wowing audiences with his electrifying voice and live performance, curating his own festival in Senegal and collaborating with Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, Tony Allen, U2 and producer John Leckie.

Now he uses his global fame to campaign for human rights while continuing to release his own brand of genre-hopping music and he shows no sign of slowing down.

Over the course of an hour Baaba takes us back to a childhood spent listening to his fatherâ€TMs call to prayer and his motherâ€TMs folk songs along the banks of the Senegal river. We hear about his early adventures across West Africa learning his trade alongside long-time collaborator Mansour Seck, meeting Chris Blackwell of Island records and his rise to fame in the 90s, and why he considers it his responsibility to use music as a tool for change in Africa.

Cerys Matthews interviews Baaba Maal, known for fusing pop and rock with African styles.