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Sample Track 1:
"Musicawi Silt" from Debo Band
Sample Track 2:
"Belomi Benna" from Debo Band
Sample Track 3:
"Bandinha (Album Version)" from Forro In the Dark
Sample Track 4:
"Riacho Do Navio" from Forro In the Dark
Sample Track 5:
" Part Of The Glory" from Balkan Beat Box
Sample Track 6:
"La Danza del Millonario" from Chicha Libre
Sample Track 7:
"La Plata (en me carrito de lata)" from Chicha Libre
Sample Track 8:
"Eh Mane Ah" from Janka
Sample Track 9:
"POW! (Intro) Fire" from M.A.K.U. Sound System
Sample Track 10:
"Naga Pedale" from M.A.K.U. Sound System
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gFSXSW: globalFEST, the Top Springboard Festival for Global Music in the U.S., Brings a Planetful of Hot Sounds to SXSW, March 2012

Heritage never sounded so cool. The artists of globalFEST (; @globalFEST_NYC, #gfsxsw) show how “world music” has matured from a quaint, catch-all niche to a deeply rooted challenge to the musical status quo.

This year, the annual world music showcase fest is bringing the all-night party to Austin on March 16 at Speakeasy (412 N. Congress Ave)—and a bevy of respected global performers.

Balkan Beat Box: Sonic pranksters throw a mean party and speak truth to power, with edgy electronics and trans-Mediterranean flair.

“An undeniably visceral performance…If BBB is world music, it's in the most literal sense—not because it comes from a relatively exotic area, but because it can move anyone in the world.” – Time Out Chicago

Chicha Libre: Psychedelic reveries, vintage grit, and Latin spark leap from Peruvian backwaters to cosmopolitan hipness thanks to this multinational band.

“For lack of a better word, an amazing show.… indigenous accordion-driven cumbia with American psychedelia, comparable to what Os Mutantes were doing in Brazil a few years earlier but more rock-oriented…Chicha Libre are as hypnotic as they are danceable, the relentless clatter of the percussion and the wild, soaring tones of the Electrovox trading off harmonies with the guitar” – Lucid Culture

Debo Band: Boston-based crew reinvents the Golden Age of Ethiopian and East African funk and jazz.

“Earth-rattling horns and mesmerizingly oscillating vocals: Boston's Debo Band takes the funky, psychedelic groove of 1960s Ethiopia and transplants it firmly onto a 21st-century dance floor.” - NPR

Janka Nabay & The Bubu Gang: Hard-hitting beats from the grand master of Sierra Leonean bubu, an age-old ritual music turned modern hybrid thanks to a Brooklyn-based gang of musicians.

“Nabay severely strips down this (traditional Bubu music) setup while preserving its teeming twitchiness, using keyboards and carburetor pipes to create a minimal but undeniably kinetic brand of music that he weds to socially conscious lyrics.”- Pitchfork

M.A.K.U. Sound System: Queens, NY-based Afro-Colombian underground band’s roaring guitars, bold brass, and furious Latin beats and vocals bring down the house.

“Punk, funk and jazz via Afro-Colombia and Queens: That's the driving and gritty energy behind New York's M.A.K.U. Sound System. Led by vocalist Liliana Conde and outfitted with horns and guitars, this raw-edged, punk-tinged band explodes with the propulsive force of traditional rhythms and urban restlessness.” - NPR

globalFEST at SXSW free with badge or wristband, with limited tickets available at the door. Show starts at 8 PM.

{full story below}

“Through our first nine editions, globalFEST has established itself as the most influential international music event in the performing arts world,” explains festival co-organizer Bill Bragin (Acidophilus: Live and Active Cultures). “But many of the artists who perform are just as relevant, if not more so, to indie music clubs and festivals. By bringing a taste of globalFEST to SXSW with four alumni artists and one artist new to the family, our hope is to expand the touring options for some of the music’s most compelling live acts.”

We love our indie rock as much as (if not more than) the next guy, but sometimes it's necessary to push your cultural boundaries a little. Know what we're sayin'? …globalFEST…has opened our eyes and ears to some incredible talent far beyond rock's spectrum.” – Flavorpill

The goal of expanding world music’s horizons and audiences has been at the heart of the festival’s mission since it was founded post-9/11, when dedicated global music presenters looked to restart the stalled influx of international music at a crucial moment. globalFEST remains committed to supporting exchange—both cultural and economic—emphasizing artists of note from Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina, and from Haiti since the earthquake that struck there in 2010.

2012’s festival continues with this first-ever SXSW showcase. It’s a logical extension of globalFEST’s emphasis on access—access to the U.S. market for innovative musicians, continued access to new global music for music fans through reasonable ticket prices—beyond good times in New York. “The lines are becoming more blurry all the time between so-called mainstream genres like pop and rock and new sounds from all over,” notes globalFEST co-organizer Shanta Thake (Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater). Artists are being influenced by international sounds and the SXSW audience is increasingly seeking out new sounds.”

“globalFEST needs to constantly be aware of its mission,” continues co-organizer Isabel Soffer (Live Sounds). “We spotlight artists we believe presenters and promoters will want to book, will be successful in their venues and will bring new audiences. Our curatorial decisions are made with this in mind, and in this way, we feel we can encourage presenters to rethink artists that are on tour.”

Another way globalFEST has extended its mission is the inauguration of the globalFEST Touring Fund (gFTF). With support from the Ford Foundation, the gFTF provides artists who have performed at previous editions of globalFEST the ability to apply for tour support to offset tour expenses in order to help them to play new markets. In the first round of the gFTF, two grants were awarded: to French gypsy jazz band Samarabalouf (gF 2008) to support performances in Juneau, Alaska and other U.S. cities, and to New York's Brooklyn Qawwali Party (gF 2009) to support performances in Schenectady and Hudson, New York.

“We hope that the globalFEST Touring Fund will enable some of the artists who showcase at our first gF@SXSW to play in some new markets, and possibly use the grants to enable them to play club dates and smaller festivals they wouldn’t be able to afford to play without this support,” says Thake. “We are excited about the possibilities that these new programs will widen globalFEST’s geographical and musical scope.”

globalFEST, Inc. is a not-for-profit production presented in association with Live Sounds, Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater, and Acidophilus: Live & Active Cultures

globalFEST SXSW media sponsors are PRI’s The World and Time Out NY.

Publicity services are provided by rock paper scissors, inc.

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