Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Folk, World Music, Jazz, Pop
This album is the odyssey of a white South African. Tony Bird was born in Malawi and traveled throughout Southern Africa. His music is an instinctive fusion of African sounds with the western traditions of folk, blues, cou... more »
This album is the odyssey of a white South African. Tony Bird was born in Malawi and traveled throughout Southern Africa. His music is an instinctive fusion of African sounds with the western traditions of folk, blues, country and rock. His songs celebrate the sensuous beauty of the African bushlands and the joys and struggles of its people, and he finds in the ancient ways of Africa a wisdom relevant to the world today. With Morris Goldberg (who worked with Paul Simon on "Graceland") and Hugh Masakela's band.
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Tony Bird: A talent of pulsating intensity and brilliance
William Courson | Berea, Kentucky USA | 11/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have been an aficianado of both folk music generally and folk of South African origin particularly for nearly thirty-five years and am thrilled to see that artists such as Wendy Waldman, Dianne Ponzio and Tony Bird (among many others) are again recording as well as being paid the attention they so richly deserve.
Quite simply, one need only to listen to Mr. Bird's "Sorry, Africa" to appreciate this man's genius.
I heartily recommend that every folk music enthusiast and every admirer of musical creativity own this remarkable album. It simply must be heard to be believed. That Mr. Bird is now performing in the USA after many years' absence from the stage is a bright blessing indeed!"
LISTEN TO THE STARS, YOU WON'T BE SORRY
A Budd | Alberta | 08/01/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Tony Bird is Malawi-born, Zimbabwe-raised now living outside of Africa. He is a singer songwriter whose musical talent offers a wonderful fusion of his African heritage combined with folk-rock and even country licks. Tony Bird is a very talented and gifted singer with a sooty and indelible voice. He delivers his songs with an unique and interesting yet always catchy nasal
twang. Tony Bird has a knack for creating and delivering picturesque images of his native lands found in songs such as "Rift Valley" and "Athione Incident".
Tony Bird covers a vast and incredibly varied terrain on this CD. His song ripple with a sweet breeze across the dessert and yet there is the surging of the mighty Zambezi River too.
Sorry Africa is a CD of hope and wonder. Tony Bird is a scatterling of Africa and his songs sing out for his land. Each song on Sorry Africa seems to represent a different facet of the land he loves. His optimism is evident in every song. Bird sings songs of unity and coming together. His music is a
wonderful upbeat synthesis of spirituality, politics and nature of the land he loves and misses. This is a fine CD. Listen to the stars. The stars are the greatest hunter as they whisper from afar " Go out and buy it" Tssik Tssik Tsa!!! Your ears will thank you!
Hat Creek, AB
July 31, 2005"
A Man Of Africa
Alfred Johnson | boston, ma | 02/23/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Blues and rural folk music, historically important on the American music scene, have always been in debt, acknowledged or not, to the sounds of Africa. Without getting into a treatise here on that subject if one is interested in the blues then it should be one's business as it was for a poet like Langston Hughes, for example, to dig into the African roots. The same quest, obviously, needs to be taken for those in who live in an increasing urbanized Africa today. Tony Bird, the artist under review here, is a man of Africa and takes that identity seriously. Moreover he is a white man of Africa. And to top that off he is a white man, one of the few unfortunately when it counted, who stood up against colonialism, neo-colonialism, white racism and apartheid. Hats off.
Somehow, someway Tony Bird through that experience has incorporated the language, the sound and, most importantly, the spirit of Africa in his music. That feat is put on display front and center in this nicely done, although all too short, CD that shows that he has assimilated those traditions. Starting from the lushly poetic, upbeat "Rift Valley" through to his signature jump tune "Mango Time" through the politically-driven title track "Sorry Africa" his sense of his African homeland shines through. He is not as successful when he slows down the beat and gets caught up with trying to deliver a message on a track like "Athlone Place" but that is merely a minor flaw in this well-produced CD by Rounder Records. By the way, Tony, for your efforts against colonialism and white racism there is no need to say sorry. The new Africa that is struggling, painfully, fitfully and with reverses to be `aborning' should recognize that.
Note: I first heard Tony Bird many years ago on an old vinyl record album entitled "Tony Bird" where I was mesmerized by his "Rift Valley" and more so by "She Came From The Karoo". The reason that I am reviewing this 1990 CD is that I recently attended a Tony Bird concert where he did a few of the songs from that old album. I make the same comment about that performance as I do about this CD. He does his Africa-centered songs as lustily and with the verve of twenty years ago, and still is as mesmerizing. His `message' songs, none of them included here, are more uneven. "New Jerusalem' is very powerful (if a little long) concerning the need for some kind of just settlement to the Palestinian question. However, "Mr. Meanie" a parable about the Bush years, "Aint't Nobody's Business Who You Love" about the varieties of possibilities inherent in the love experience and "Well Done, America", his Africa tribute to the election of Barack Obama as the first black American president were less so. Still, if you get a chance, he is well worth seeing when he hits his stride.