25th September 2014
U Srinivas, 28 February 1969 – 19 September 2014
With great sadness we have learned that the outstanding musician Uppalapu Shrinivas – known worldwide as U Srinivas, or Mandolin Srinivas, because of the instrument he popularised – has passed away aged 45, in Chennai India, of complications following a liver operation. The death of a great talent is always a blow, but even more so when it is at a relatively early age. It is the greatest of ironies to spend the formative years of a career described as a child prodigy, and then to pass away having finally been allowed the credit of mature maestro. To succeed in the super-critical and highly developed world of Indian classical music is hard enough, but to do so on an instrument completely out of the prevailing tradition is a challenge. U Srinivas joined a trend of 20th Century Indian musicians (for example Kadri Gopalnath, Brij Bushan Kabra, Shivkumar Sharma) to bring in other valid voices to the orthodoxy of Indian classical music.
15th September 2014
28th July 2014
And so it came to pass that the Porretta Soul Festival turned 27 years old this July. This wonderful three-day event, held in the small and friendly spa town of Porretta Terme – about an hour south of Bologna on the train – grew from a desire by music mogul and diehard soul fan Graziano Uliani to pay tribute to his own hero, Otis Redding, by bringing some of the finest artists from he American South to Europe and presenting them in the charming surroundings of Porretta. In the years that have gone by since Porretta 1, Graziano has made his dreams – and those of southern soul lovers everywhere – come true time and time again.
28th July 2014
OK, who out there agrees with Ace that the world’s greatest dog-walker, original “Tiger Man” and former oldest living teenager/funkiest man alive Rufus Thomas ought to be in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame by now?
Right, that’s everybody then. So what are we going to do about it?
Well, fortunately for us we don’t have to do much, as Rufus’ daughter (and friend of Ace) Vaneese is already doing all she can to make it happen. Vaneese has a petition on her website and is asking all lovers of Memphis music to log on and sign that petition. She needs all the signatures she can get, so get your friends to do it too.
Fine artists they might all be in their own way but if the likes of Heart, Rush and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are in, there’s really no excuse for Rufus not to be – so log on to http://vaneesethomas.com/rufus-thomas/ and add your name to the list right now!
7th July 2014
LOS ANGELES, JULY 7th: A long form 110+ minute documentary The Seeds: Pushin’ Too Hard, directed by Neil Norman for GNP Crescendo, is scheduled for debut theatrical release on August 16th 2014. The Egyptian Theater at the American Cinematheque will premiere the movie.