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Exotic vibe from around the world

By Nie Xin (Shanghai Daily)

09:21, September 28, 2012

(Photo/worldmusicshanghai.com)

World Music Shanghai 2012 (Autumn Festival) from Monday to Saturday (October 1 to 6 ) will feature vibrant, original sound from West Africa, India, Mongolia, Romania, China and other countries.

The festival titled "Nature, Music and Home" will feature outdoor as well as indoor concerts.

During the six-day music event, five music groups will give open concerts and workshops at the Music Concert Hall for the opening ceremony and then at four neighborhoods in Baoshan, Minhang and Huangpu districts and Pudong New Area.

Performers include Gangbe Brass Band from Benin, which combines contemporary and traditional music, jazz and Benin folk music; the Nadara Gyspy Band from Romania, which call itself the best Romany band in the world and played on the sound track for "Sherlock Holmes A Game of Shadows" (2011); the Haya Band, featuring Mongolian traditional music with contemporary elements; Pandit Keshav Talegaonkar from India; the Chinese team Chord Song with experimental musician Huan Qing from Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan Province, and American-born Chinese Li Daiguo who combine folk Chinese musical instruments such as erhu (two-string fiddle) and pipa (lute) with hip-hop.

"World Music comes from our life and culture, where we can find our sounds from the heart. All the troupes take the old culture of hundreds and thousands of years," says Yang Lei, producer of the music festival.

World music encompasses many different styles of music from around the world, including traditional music, quasi-traditional music and music where more than one cultural tradition intermingle. It's inclusive, elastic, often exotic and is sometimes described as "local music from out there."

World music is just catching on in China and notably in Shanghai, says Zang Yanbin, vice director of Xinhui Entertainment Group, the co-organizer of the music festival. In China, female singer Zhu Zheqin, also known by her stage name as Dadawa, is a widely known voice of world music, joined by more and more artists, such as Haya and Hang Gai.

"World music festival has more and more influences in China. We hope it can become music season in the future and boom in other Chinese cities," Zang adds.

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