Ponderosa Brings the Power of TARANTA to the US

Apr 22, 2015 1672

Milan-based record label Ponderosa Music & Art announces a slate of US releases offering a sonic survey of "Taranta", the music of southeastern Italy's Salento peninsula. All modern takes on a centuries-old tradition, albums by Ludovico Einaudi, Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino (CGS), Kalàscima and Antonio Castrignanò are available digitally beginning in April, and, for the first time, physically available in May via Harmonia Mundi Distribution.

The mystical tale of a spider's bite and a frenzied dance for life — a metaphor for curing one's emotional ills through the power of community — draws the listener into a timeless musical web of hypnotic melodies and trance-inducing rhythms.

Piemonte-born pianist and composer Ludovico Einaudi's relationship to the Taranta began with the maestro's two year tenure as Conductor of Puglia's renown La Notte della Taranta music festival in 2010 and 2011. On the "Taranta Project" the minimalist master processes this previous work though his own compositional influences, expanding the music into new directions of epic proportions. A kaleidoscope of global sounds joins the mix from African and Middle Eastern to Electronic Music and Rock. International guest artists such as Mercan Dede, Ballaké Sissoko, Justin Adams and Juldeh Camara are featured side by side with Salento talent such as Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino's Mauro Durante, Einaudi's long time musical companion on his Taranta journey. A stirring video for the title-inspired song "Taranta" features rare film footage from healing rituals in 1960's Salento.
Taranta Project EPK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9k5r_-gy9EY

Italy's leading band on the world music scene, Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino celebrates its 40th year with the release of "Quaranta" (40). Lauded under the new leadership of Mauro Durante, the offspring of CGS's founding members, this second generation group has recently garnered critical acclaim from the likes of The New York Times, NPR, The Guardian and the BBC. A whirlwind of touring on the international circuit has included stops on prestigious stages including Womad (UK, Australia, New Zealand), Womex, SXSW, Sziget, Montreal Jazz as well as a scheduled set at this summer's Cambridge Folk Festival. Quaranta was produced by Ian Brennan, 2012 Grammy Award winner in the Best World Music category for Tinariwen's "Tassili" album, and features guests such as Ludovico Einaudi and Piers Faccini. A video for the song "Solo Andata" (One Way Ticket) has already earned Amnesty International Italy's 2014 Arts and Human Rights Award. Set to text by author Erri de Luca, and director Alessandro Gassmann, the video tackles the ongoing issue of immigrants from North Africa to Italy's shores. Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino are also in the process of developing a Taranta-themed theatrical production with the team who took the show Fela! to Broadway.
Solo andata: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tf-bH-aaLB4

A Top-10 debut for "Psychedelic Trance Tarantella" in the global trend-setting World Music Charts Europe for April 2015, marks the second album for Kalàscima and their first release on Ponderosa. The Salento-based 6-piece's innovative mix of Electronic music and Southern Italian Folk has made them a festival favorite for the past fifteen years, from La Notte della Taranta to international tours in Australia, Latin America, the Middle East and Northern Europe. "Psychedelic Trance Tarantella" features the piano work of maestro Ludovico Einaudi on the track "Due mari" (Two seas).
Psychedelic Trance Tarantella: https://soundcloud.com/riccardo-lagan/sets/psychedelic-trance-tarantella-kalascima-2014/s-eCucb

A featured performer in the La Notte della Taranta festival, singer, musician and composer Antonio Castrignanò has collaborated with Italian and international artists such as Stewart Copeland, Mauro Pagani, Giuliano Sangiorgi/Negramaro, The Chieftains, Goran Bregovic, Ludovico Einaudi, Ballakè Sissoko and Mercan Dede. FOMENTA: Ilenu De Taranta is Castrignanò's sophomore solo set and was produced by Dede, the noted Turkish multi-instrumentalist and DJ. Castrignanò made his recording debut as the composer for the original soundtrack to the 2006 film "Nuovomondo", which picked up 6 wins at the Venice Film Festival before making its US debut under the title of "The Golden Door" at the 2007 Tribeca Flm Festival, where it was presented by Martin Scorsese.
Fomenta: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amq-0gyG-gs

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