Interesting not only because over the years – the first edition is dated 1996, so we are close to two decades – has been renewed without falling in self. But mainly because it is proving to understanding music as a complex production and not as a simple representation, nor as a mere entertainment show (though it might be nice). This organic perspective – that endows the organizers of a broader look, which allows us each year to meet musicians from all over, which for their part interpret the blues matrix through a deep kaleidoscope of combinations – takes shape in two main directions. On the one hand in a series of initiatives that have arisen as a corollary of the event and who had, in recent years, a development that has gone beyond the blues and the plot of the festival. On the other hand, in moments of depth through which the music is indirectly returned a cultural value, which includes the “musical behaviors” and are imprinted the processes by which musical expressions are produced, determined by factors that go far beyond the harmonic combinations and melodic modules, as the sphere of social and politics.
Regarding the first point, the organizers of Trasimeno Blues have given rise to events that have carved out a space characterized by quality and accessibility of the proposal. Among them are especially “White, Red & Blues” and “Umbria gospel.” How Trasimeno Blues, are itinerant and engage with a wider territory, unlike the other festivals of our region that instead bind exclusively to a city.
Regarding the second point, namely the construction of a network of events from which emerges a more inclusive approach towards musical productions bluesy, I mainly remember the event that marks this year’s edition. It is a meeting on the issue of the political crisis in Mali. Mali is the birthplace of the blues, as we recall many scholars, musicians, and, not least, the director Martin Scorsese, who, with the anthropologist and bluesman Corey Harris as an intercontinental guide, in 2002 shot the documentary “From Mali to Mississippi”. The conference is organized in relation to other (only) music events that will see the presence of formations and Malian artists such as Terakaft – Touareg hybrid project, covering some of the most famous members of Tinariwen – and guitarist Vieux Farka Touré. The latter is the son and heir music of Ali Farka Touré, one of the most influential guitarists in Africa, who became famous worldwide thanks to the World Circuit – the record label that produced most of his records – and, above all, unforgettable records as “Talking Timbuktu” in 1994, co-written with Ry Cooder.
The title of the conference is “Conflict in Mali. The music as a force for peace” and is introduced as follows: “The complex dynamics underlying the crisis in Mali, in the land considered the ‘cradle of the blues’, where music, priceless wealth of the culture of the peoples of Mali, is the means most effective way to foster communication, aggregation and integration among the people”. Participants will Rosalba Calabretta, President of the association “Solidarité nard-south”, Martha Friend, ethnomusicologist, member of the organization of “Festival au Desert” in Timbuktu and “Attendance of Africa” in Florence. It is scheduled for Sunday 28 July, Castiglione del Lago, Palazzo della Corgna 17.00.
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