World Cup of Music June 24

Final Games; Groups E & F

Review of Matches June 23; So the inevitable happened, which Beckenbauer picked up a long time before the tunnel-vision British press, and England and Germany contrived to meet in the second round. Ghana could have drawn with, or even beaten Germany until Mesut Ozil hit a fabulous goal, but they looked strong throughout. Australia took out the uneven Serbs, which worked for Ghana, whilst Algeria defended stoutly but could have lost by a hatful until the resilient Landon Donovan added to his record total of goals for the USA to take them through. With the Bavarian beer girls being acquitted and the web, social media and Twitter being emptied of Yanks this evening the Theme Tune has to be LCD (Landon Champion Donovan) Soundsystem and Drunk Girls;

Preview of Group F; The wonderful Paraguay, another team playing with a bunch of forwards and the only team to beat both Argentina and Brazil in qualifying, face over-achievers New Zealand and, whilst they are spirited and well-organised Paraguay could have fun. Italy aren’t great without Pirlo but Slovakia have been even more disappointing. Could be bore draws all round, but I fancy Paraguay to play football.

Paraguay; As discussed before musical development in Paraguay was limited under Stroessner but curiously a mainstream American jazz community developed, particularly Big Band. A star of this music was PALITO MIRANDA and his Musica Comercial do Conservatorio de Tatuí. He played alto-sax and wrote and arranged much of his music. Here is a great TV version of his Barreto Blues

New Zealand; New Zealand, as well as having a Department of Ethnomusicology in Auckland has a Maori music tradition which has also developed Pacific Reggae or Maori Reggae. From this movement one of the most significant bands has been the very mellow Herbs. They breakthrough track gives of the kind of vibe that New Zealand will have enjoyed after their great win over Italy Whats be Happen?

Slovakia Slovakia is to the East of the Czech republic and shades into the Carpathians where several cultural histories overlap. The Slovakian folk year peaks with the annual Fasiang Festival in Lower Orava around the Oravan dances. But as part of the culturally complex Slovakia there are  120,000 Rusyns in the Carpathian mountains to the East and their Carpatho-Rusyn folk is quite Russian (their origins lying in the Kievan Rus) Sága krásy – Lemkos – Rusíni

Italy; One of the idiosyncratic features of the way Italy has responded to rock music is how they have fallen in love with prog-rock and psychedelia. Given their fondness for Opera it was on the cards that the Rock of Excess should appeal. A blog post I wrote on the The Beatles Psychedelia gets lots of hits from Italy, and the Manticore label promoted an Italian variant of Psychedelia whom the biggest band is Banco del Mutuo Soccorso. They are still going strong and here they are live

Preview of Group E; With Holland safely through and looking to improve as a team or rest players, the match with Cameroon, who are already out, may prove disappointing. However the Denmark Japan game, with both teams showing good organisation and an ability to attack, may be the match of the round as winner takes all (well second place).

Denmark; Danish music has a particularly long tradition of jazz fro a European country, since 1923, and it has been popular ever since. So much so that, like Paris, many American musicians lived there. There are many fine Danish Jazz musicians now but one of the most interesting is the female percussionist Marilyn Mazur who has worked with a lot many American musicians, including Miles Davis, and also has her own band. Here they are with, what else, A Drum is A Woman

Japan; Japan has a long tradition of rock bands since Narita onwards, and are particularly good percussionists. However Tokyo bands are often stylish and flashy and the  Pizzicato Five are also arch and camp along with that. They are delightful fun and well aware of the tropes and memes of video production. Here they are with their tribute to the sixties and the long-gone sensibilities of gallic cool ,Twiggy Twiggy;

Cameroon; This is a real find, whilst searching out some Bikutsi music, as heard on Paul Simon’s Proof featuring Cameroonian guitar player Vincent Nguini I discovered the video to Julius Essoka‘s Free Bees. This is a startlingly fresh mashup of West African and modern styles and has a cute and modern video. Free Bees;

Holland; I have had a fondness for Dutch bands ever since I discovered Supersister and wrote about them in Melody Maker (long story). But my experience of Dutch music has been through the various Amsterdam music scenes, but outside of the capital in recent years Boerenrock has become popular, a sort of rock n’tractors mix based around Festivals held in Fields. Field Music? No the very legal Sub Fox

LEGO WORLD CUP; With Holland and Japan entering the stage with high hopes of qualifying together, we are showing the replay of their match up a few days ago which proved comfortable for the Dutch;

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