Around the World Preview – 29 & 31 August 2021

And we're back ...

This week, we reach the end of August and Around the World returns to what we have convinced ourselves is normal. The summer’s gone and all the leaves are falling, the nights are fair closing in and there is a whisper in the wind that winter is coming …

Around the World is on Ferry FM and Slice Audio on Sundays at 10:00 pm to midnight. In August, Radio Larne joined the group playing the show on Sundays at 10:00 pm, too. On Tuesdays at 7:00 pm the show is broadcast on Bangor FMLisburn’s 98FM and FM105 Down Community Radio

In this week’s show: For two hours every week – we forget about where we are and dream about where we could be. Greece would be nice. I don’t play very much music from Greece, so to help reset the balance, there will be four or five tracks from Greece. All quite different, all excellent.

Also, we go to many of our regular haunts: South Africa, France, Mali, Colombia, Italy, Senegal, Hungry, Scotland and Ireland but we also find music in the Republic of Karelia and Guantanamo in Cuba.

Most of the music I play on the show is recorded in studio, although in recent time, often recorded online in several studios, converted bedrooms even gardens as musicians have been adjusting to the current crisis. Sometimes I’ll play tracks from live albums – but not that often – they’re not something I’m overly fond of. But from time to time, you get field recordings.

And field recordings are very different and very important to capture the “real” music of a place. Between 2017 and 2019 music journalist Gianluca Tramontana travelled to the Guantanamo region of Cuba and immersed himself in the local music recording people in their homes, backyards and porches. The result is a three hour plus CD. It has just been released and I’ll be playing one track from Changüí: The Sound of Guantánamo [more info here on Rough Trade] this week and many more to come.

When I’m driving I’m a pretty impatient radio listener. I’m constantly stabbing the radio with my finger trying to find something better. Usually “something better” doesn’t last long – and more often than not it’s not all that interesting. But a few weekends ago I punched up BBC Radio 3 and heard that. It was part of a programme celebrating the poetry and prose of Walter Scott. The music included folk and classical – of course – and a very entertaining piece of Scottish folk/electronic music by Fergus MacKenzie & Simon Thoumire – from a 1995 album Exhibit A [Discogs].


Habbi Funk is a label based in Berlin that has been seeking out older music from the Arabic world – rock, and funk and Arabic blues. Mainly they are releasing full albums but there have been a few copmpilations. Habbi Funk 15 has just been released An Eclectic Selection of Music from the Arab World. I’ll be playing something from that album.

The featured album this week is Lila Downs’s La Cantina which was released in 2006. The Mexican singers first releases were in the mid-90s and was her 6th and generally regarded as one that established her reputation internationally.

Other music to tune in to.

Listen in if you can Sunday at 10:00 pm on Ferry FMSlice Audio and Radio Larne or on Tuesdays at 7:00 pm on Bangor FMLisburn’s 98FM and FM105 Down Community Radio. Or yopu can find the show’s archive here in Mixcloud.

Have a great weekend,



What music should I be listening to? Send me a message about your music suggestions via my blog.

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The Around the World archive on Mixcloud

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FM105 Down Community Radio:

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