The Website for Fans of the Afro Celt Sound System










 

 

We hope that you find the answer to your questions about ACSS here.  If not, just post your question in the ACSS Forum and we'll do our best to answer it! Special thanks to Don for compiling almost all of the information below.

 

WHEN WILL THE BAND TOUR IN [INSERT YOUR TOWN, CITY, STATE, REGION, COUNTRY]? 

 

We post information on all ACSS gigs as soon as we get confirmation from the band on the Gigs page and in the ACSS Announcements and Gigs area of the ACSS Forum.  If it isn't posted, then we don't have any information that we can share with you.

 

HOW CAN I GET IN TOUCH WITH THE BAND?

 

Well, Iarla’s phone number is… oh, wait!  The best way to get in touch with the band is simply to visit the ACSS Forum (log on directly at www.afrocelts.us).  Simon, James, and Martin have all been gracious enough to answer fan questions in the forum over the years.  They’re busy people, of course, and we can’t guarantee a response, but if you post your question in the ACSS Forum you never know when someone from the ACSS inner sanctum will respond!

 

CAN I BUY A DVD OF A LIVE PERFORMANCE?

 

The band’s 2001 performance at the WOMAD USA festival in Seattle, Washington was filmed and recorded with an eye toward an eventual live CD or DVD release.  However, due to technical problems, the audio recording of the concert was seriously flawed.  Some of the video from that performance eventually made its way onto the bonus DVD accompanying the POD remix album.  The footage was condensed into a quick montage and overlaid with the album versions of the songs instead of the actual concert audio.  It's a great DVD and a wonderful bonus you get just for buying POD.

 

ARE THERE ANY PLANS FOR A LIVE ALBUM OR A CONCERT DVD?

 

Fans have long been requesting a live ACSS release, and the band has expressed a definite desire to put such a project together.  However, due to a variety of factors outside the band’s control, a live album/DVD has not yet materialized.  Fans can rest in the knowledge that the band earnestly wants to release a live performance DVD/CD.  As far as we know, there are no plans for such a project at this time but we hope that one will be released at some point in the future.

 

IS THERE A FAN E-MAIL LIST I CAN JOIN?

 

Yes, in a way.  If you send an email to afroceltsfan@yahoo.com requesting to receive future email updates from the band, I will provide that information to the band.  However, at this point, we are not yet equipped to send out regular updates or notify people individually about upcoming gigs. 

 

WHY DOESN’T THE BAND HAVE AN “OFFICIAL” WEB SITE?

 

Although efforts were made to substantially redesign and lauch a new official web site loaded with great content and features, this effort fell short of its goal.  ACSS now redirects its official domain name to this website, a fan-created site, until its new official site can be launched.  There is no timetable or firm plans on when this will happen, but we are in regular contact with the band and update afrocelts.org frequently with all the latest news from the band.  Additional “official” sources of band information include www.MySpace.com/afrocelts (maintained by Martin Russell) and www.realworldrecords.com/afrocelts.


IS ACSS STILL WITH PETER GABRIEL’S REALWORLD RECORDS LABEL?

 

With the release of ANATOMIC, the band’s initial five-album deal with Realworld ended.  The remix project POD was essentially a gift from the band in response to strong demands from its club-oriented fan base, and was not part of the original contract.  As of this writing, the band is exploring its options.

 

WHO ARE THE AFRO CELT SOUND SYSTEM?

 

The Afro Celt Sound System was formed in 1995 as a collaborative effort between traditional African and Celtic musicians and several respected figures from the UK music scene.  To read the full band biography, check out their MySpace Web page or visit their Real World Records microsite.  Make sure that you click on each album icon and explore the great video clips available on the realworldrecords.com website.  You will see great live clips, behind the scenes interviews and have many of your questions answered by the band members themselves.


WHAT IS A “SOUND SYSTEM?”

 

The term “sound system” originated in the ghettos of Kingston, Jamaica in the 1950s.  At that time, a new form of public entertainment was emerging in which DJs would load their generators, turntables, and speakers on the back of a truck and host street parties.  The end result was a combination of live performance and pre-recorded music that was sort of like a “rock concert without the band.”  Over the years, the sound systems evolved to include live instrumentation, dancers, and elaborate light shows, gaining popularity all over the world, but especially in the UK.  The Afro Celt Sound System is based more on the UK model, in that live instrumentation and performance have always been a part of the equation.  Ever the picture of versatility, the Afro Celts have performed shows both as “DJ sets” featuring Simon and Martin spinning pre-recorded elements of the band’s music, and as a full band, with all of the players and their respective instruments present on stage.

Other musical acts that have adapted the “sound system” approach include Transglobal Underground, Joi, Dubtribe Sound System, Anima Sound System, Sneaky Sound System, Massilia Sound System, Adrian Sherwood’s On-U Sound System, and Dreadzone Sound System, among many others.

 

SO WHAT IS THE BAND’S ACTUAL NAME - AFRO CELT SOUND SYSTEM OR AFRO CELTS?

 

The band's actual name is the Afro Celt Sound System.  For the release of its 2003 album, “Seed,” the group felt that it had become a true band, having honed its instrumental and live performances to the point that the “sound system” tag no longer applied.  Accordingly, “Seed” was released under the streamlined name Afro Celts.  This approach proved confusing to the record-buying public and to others who had come to know and love the band as Afro Celt Sound System.  Accordingly, the name reverted back to its original format for subsequent album releases.  It should also be noted that although official album releases feature the name Afro Celt Sound System, “Afro Celts” is the accepted shorthand for band members and fans.

 

WHERE CAN I FIND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH BAND MEMBER?

 

Check out our Band and Links pages.

 

WHERE CAN I FIND ALBUM REVIEWS/ARTICLES/PRESS CLIPPINGS ABOUT THE BAND?

 

There isn’t one location where everything is readily assembled, but your best source would is this website and the band's RealWorld Records microsite.  We have exclusive articles written by band members and album reviews.  Conducting Google searchs for  terms such as "afro celt sound system" and "afro celts" can also unearth some interesting past articles and reviews.

 

WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF ACSS AND WHAT INSTRUMENTS DO THEY PLAY?

 

The “official” band lineup has changed with each album.  For ACSS’s most recent recording, “Anatomic,” the group was whittled down to four members (Simon Emmerson, Martin Russell, James McNally, Iarla O’Lionaird), with other longtime Afro Celts such as N’Faly Kouyate and Johnny Kalsi listed as “guest musicians.”  Here is the band lineup, not counting guests, for each album:

 

Volume 1: Sound Magic

 

Ronan Browne (uilleann pipes, flutes, harmonium, mandolin);
James McNally (whistle, bodhran, accordion), Davy Spillane (uilleann pipes, whistle)
Myrdhin (Celtic harp)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Ayub Ogada (vocals, nyatiti)
Kauwding Cissokho (kora)
Masamba Diop (talking drums)
Simon Emmerson (guitars, programming)
Jo Bruce (keyboards, programming)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming)

 

Volume 2: Release

 

Simon Emmerson (guitars, programming, keyboards)
James McNally (keyboards, whistles, bodhran, accordion)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming, engineering)
N’Faly Kouyate (vocals, kora, balafon)
Myrdhin(Celtic harp)
Moussa Sissokho (talking drum, djembe)

 

Volume 3: Further in Time

 

Simon Emmerson (guitars, bouzouki, mandolin, drum programming)
James McNally (whistles, keyboards, bodhran, piano, accordion, harmonium, programming)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming, ‘front of house’ live sound)
N’Faly Kouyate (vocals, kora, balafon)
Demba Barry (vocals, dancing)
Johnny Kalsi (dhol drums, tabla, ‘Kalsi kit’)
Moussa Sissokho (talking drum, djembe)
Emer Mayock (uilleann pipes, flute)
Mass (programming)

 

Seed

 

Simon Emmerson (guitars, mandolin, bouzouki, stapletone, keyboards, programming)
James McNally (keyboards, piano, whistles, bodhran, programming, guitar)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming)
N’Faly Kouyate (vocals, kora, balafon, n’goma drum)
Myrdhin (harp)
Mass (keyboards, programming, shaker)
Johnny Kalsi (dhol drum, percussion, tabla, ‘Kalsi Kit’)
Moussa Sissokho (talking drum, djembe)
Emer Mayock (uilleann pipes)

 

Pod

 

Simon Emmerson (guitars, mandolin, bouzouki, programming, keyboards)
James McNally (keyboards, whistles, bodhran, piano, accordion, harmonium, programming)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming, engineering)
N’Faly Kouyate (balafon, kora, vocals)
Myrdhin (Celtic harp)
Mass (programming)
Johnny Kalsi (dhol drums, tabla, ‘Kalsi Kit’)
Moussa Sissokho (talking drum, djembe)
Emer Mayock (uilleann pipes, flute)

 

Anatomic

 

Simon Emmerson (guitars, bouzouki, cittern, mandolin)
James McNally (whistles, keyboards, piano, bodhran, programming, accordion,  harmonium, guitar, kalimba)
Iarla O’Lionaird (vocals)
Martin Russell (keyboards, programming, engineering).

 

WHAT MUSICIANS HAVE BEEN GUESTS ON ACSS ALBUMS?

 

The list is huge.  Here it is:

 

Volume 1:Sound Magic - Levon Minassian (doudouk), Manu Katche (cymbals), Simon Edwards (sintar), Shooglenifty (a Scottish band that contributed banjo, drums, guitar, etc.), Caroline Lavelle (cello), Jocelyn Pook (viola), John Fortis (electric bass, keyboard), Zil (vocal drone).

 

Volume 2: Release - Ron Aslan (programming), Ronan Browne (uilleann pipes), Michael McGoldrick (uilleann pipes, flute), Sinead O’Connor (vocals), Ashley Maher (vocals), Johnny Kalsi (dhol drums, tabla), Nigel Eaton (hurdy gurdy), Youth (bass).

 

Volume 3: Further In Time - Peter Gabriel (vocals, keyboards), Robert Plant (yes, THAT Robert Plant, vocals), Pina Kollars (vocals), Julie Murphy (from the group Fernhill, vocals), Ciaran Tourish and Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh (of the Irish traditional group Altan, fiddles), Nawazish Ali Khan (violin), Nigel Eaton (hurdy gurdy), John Fortis (bass), Sunil Kalyan (tabla), Pete Lockett (percussion), yrdhin (Celtic harp), Liam O’Flynn (uilleann pipes), Hossam Ramzy (percussion), Screaming Orpahns (vocals), Rosie Wetters (cello), Wired Strings (strings).

 

Seed: Ron Aslan (programming), Natalia Bonner (violin), Jesse Cook (flamenco guitar), Laurence Cottie (bass), Valerie Etienne (vocals), Ali Friend (double bass), Martin Hayes (fiddle), Sharlene Hector (vocals), Eileen Ivers (fiddle), Michelle John-Douglas (vocals), Pete Lockett (percussion), Nina Miranda (vocals), Mundy (vocals), Ayub Ogada (nyatiti), Screaming Orphans (vocals), Hilaire Penda (bass), Hossam Ramzy (percussion, tabla), Lucy Theo (viola), Paul Turner (bass), Katherine Watmough (violin), Rosie Wetters (cello), Jah Wobble (bass).

 

Pod: Nula Friedman (fiddle), Ian Markin (drums), Mairead Nesbitt (fiddle).

 

Volume 5: Anatomic - Johnny Kalsi (dhol drums, percussion), N’Faly Kouyate (kora, vocals), Emer Mayock (uilleann pipes, flute), Moussa Sissokho (talking drum, djembe), Mass (programming, bass), Eileen Ivers (fiddle), Dorothee Munyaneza (vocals),
Sevara Nazarkhan (vocals), Ian Markin (drums), Francis Hylton (bass), Nigel Eaton (hurdy gurdy), Richard Marcangelo (percussion), Hossam Ramzy (percussion), Ron Aslan (programming).

 

ARE THE MEMBERS OF ACSS INVOLVED IN ANY SIDE PROJECTS OR OTHER MUSICAL ENDEAVOURS?

 

For a more extensive answer to this question, check out our “Band”, "Links" and “Discography” pages.  Here is a brief summary:

 

Simon Emmerson – Simon is an acclaimed producer and musician who has enjoyed an illustrious career in the fields of world music, jazz, folk, and rock.  His production work on Baaba Maal’s “Firin in Fouta” album provided the creative spark for what would become the Afro Celt Sound System.

 

James McNally – James is a celebrated multi-instrumentalist (as if you couldn’t tell that from reading his extensive list of instruments in the album credits above!) who has worked with The Pogues, Annie Lennox, and Peter Gabriel, among many others.  He released a solo album in 1997 called “Everybreath.”

 

Iarla O’Lionaird – Iarla is Ireland’s leading purveyor of the ancient “sean-nos” singing tradition.  His myriad fans include Bono, Nick Cave, and Sinead O’Connor.  He has released two solo albums on the Realworld label, as well as the soundtrack for the film “I Could Read the Sky.”

 

Martin Russell – Martin is the “man behind the boards” on all ACSS albums, and handles the complex engineering for the band’s live shows.  He has also done several surround-sound mixes of the band’s work, most notably “North” on the Pod DVD and “Mojave” as heard on the band’s MySpace page.  Martin has also co-produced several recordings with Simon, including Maryam Mursal’s “The Journey,” tracks from Baaba Maal’s “Nomad Soul,” the "Bosta" movie soundtrack, and is primarily responsible for the band’s contributions to the “Hotel Rwanda” movie soundtrack.

 

Johnny Kalsi – Johnny is the undisputed master of the dhol drum and, as founder of the Dhol Foundation, a respected mentor and teacher to up-and-coming musicians.  The Dhol Foundation has also released two CDs of its own, including “Big Drum Small World” and “Drum-Believable.”

 

N’Faly Kouyate – N’Faly’s West African heritage is proudly displayed in his contributions to the Afro Celt Sound System’s music, most notably through his distinctive African vocals and performances on the kora and balafon.  N’Faly also heads up his own band, Dunyakan, which has released a CD called “Kora Grooves.”

 

Emer Mayock – Emer is a trusted and much sought-after member of the Irish music scene.  In addition to appearing on the past few Afro Celts albums, she has also contributed to a number of theatrical and multimedia productions.

 

Moussa Sissokho – Born in Senegal, Sissokho now lives in Paris and is a much in-demand percussionist.  The gift of music obviously runs in his family.  He has played djembe and talking drum on almost every Afro Celts release, and his cousin, Kauwding, played kora on “Volume 1.”

 

WHAT LANGUAGE IS BEING SUNG ON…?

 

For lyrics and translations to many ACSS songs, visit our “Lyrics” page.  Because the band truly represents the “global village,” the lyrics on each Afro Celts release represent a wide range of languages, cultures, and traditions.  Here is a brief summary of the languages employed on each album:

 

Volume 1: Sound Magic

 

“Inion/Daughter”: Gaelic
“Nil Cead Againn Dul Abhaile/We Cannot Go Home”: Gaelic (Iarla), Luo (Ayub)
“House of the Ancestors”: Gaelic (Iarla), Luo (Ayub)
“Eistigh Liomsa Sealad/Listen to Me”: Gaelic (note: The tune Iarla is singing is based on the traditional Irish melody “Sean O’Duibhir A’ Glheanna/John O’Dwyer of the Glen”)

 

Volume 2: Release

 

“Release”: English (Sinead), Gaelic (Iarla), Malinke (N’Faly)
“Eireann”: Gaelic (Iarla), Malinke (N’Faly)
“Even in My Dreams”: Gaelic, English
“Amber”: Gaelic, English (Iarla), French (N’Faly)
“Riding the Waves”: Malinke
“I Think Of…”: Gaelic

 

Volume 3: Further In Time

 

“When You’re Falling”: English (Peter), Gaelic (Iarla)
“Lagan”: Gaelic
“Shadowman”: Simon calls this “a modern style of African singing which, to be honest, we never knew Demba did; very punchy, rap-like.”
“Life Begin Again”: English (Robert), Welsh (Julie)
“Further in Time”: Malinke
“Go On Through”: English (Pina), Gaelic (Iarla)
“Persistence of Memory”: English
“Onwards”: Malinke

 

Seed

 

“Cyberia”: Gaelic
“Nevermore”: Portuguese (Nina), English (Iarla)
“Ayub’s Song/As You Were”: Gaelic (Iarla), Malinke (N’Faly)
“Rise/Rise Above It”: Gaelic (Iarla), English (Mundy)
“All Remains”: English

 

Pod

 

“Johnny at Sea”: Malinke
“Persistence of Memory” remix: English
“Further in Time” remix: Malinke
“Riding the Skies”: Malinke
“Eireann” remix: Gaelic (Iarla), Malinke (N’Faly)
“Release” remix: English (Sinead), Gaelic (Iarla)
“When You’re Falling” remix: English (Peter), Gaelic (Iarla)
“Lagan” remix: Gaelic

 

Volume 5: Anatomic

 

“When I Still Needed You”: Kinyarwanda
“My Secret Bliss”: Uzbeki (Sevara), English, Gaelic (Iarla)
“Mojave”: Gaelic
“Sene (Working the Land)”: Malinke
“Beautiful Rain”: English
“Mother”: Kinyarwanda (Dorothee), English (Iarla)
“Drake”: Gaelic

 

WHAT IS THE ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF…?

 

For available translations to many ACSS songs, check out our “Lyrics” page.

 

WHO DESIGNED THE ARTWORK FOR THE VARIOUS ACSS ALBUM COVERS?

 

Jamie Reid designed the artwork for Volumes 1 and 2 and provided the template for Volume 3, along with their related singles.  He is also responsible for the “flying saucer” design that can be found in the ACSS logo.  You can find more of his work on his web site at www.jamiereid.uk.net.

 

The cover for “Seed” was designed by Marc Bessant and Tony Stiles at Realworld Records; “Pod” was designed by Derek Edwards at Realworld, and “Anatomic,” again, by Realworld’s Marc Bessant.

 

HOW MANY ALBUMS HAS ACSS RELEASED?

 

There are six official albums, including Volume 1: Sound Magic (1996); Volume 2: Release (1999); Volume 3: Further in Time (2001); Seed (2003); Pod (2004); Anatomic (2005) (note: depending on who you ask, this album is sometimes referred to as “Volume 5: Anatomic”).

 

HAS THE BAND RELEASED ANY SINGLES?

 

You bet.  Commercially release singles include:


“Whirl-Y-Reel” (1996)
“Sure-As-Not” (1997)
“Release” (1999)
“When You’re Falling” (2001)

 

Promo-only singles include:


“Life Begin Again” (2001)
“Rise Above It” (2003)
“When I Still Needed You”/”My Secret Bliss” (2005)

 

I'M A NEW FAN. WHICH ALBUM SHOULD I BUY FIRST?

 

All of them.  Seriously, each album is excellent from start to finish.  We suggest that you read about each album on our Discography page, check out our reviews of Pod and Anatomic on the Articles page, then choose one based on your own musical preferences.  Look at it this way, you can't go wrong no matter which album you choose to buy first.

 

I’M LOOKING FOR AN OUT-OF-PRINT OR OTHERWISE RARE TITLE FROM THE ACSS DISCOGRAPHY.  WHERE CAN I FIND IT?

 

All of the band’s albums are still in print and can be easily obtained through a variety of online retailers as well as through brick-and-mortar stores that have a “world music” section. Out-of-print and promotional titles can often be found on the secondary market, including such sources as www.ebay.com, www.GEMM.com, www.eil.com, and www.amazon.com/marketplace.

 

WHAT REMIXES AND OTHER NON-ALBUM TRACKS ARE AVAILABLE?

 

The Discography section provides an extensive overview of most ACSS releases and will be updated soon.  Here’s a few brief overview:

 

VOLUME 1: SOUND MAGIC ERA:

 

Remixes of “Whirl-Y-Reel,” “Sure-As-Not,” and “Inion” appeared on various commercially released CD singles and vinyl.

”Whirl-Y-Reel”[live] – a live studio version of this song, complete with blistering percussion and pipes solos at the end, appears on the CD “Live at the World Café Volume 10.”

 

VOLUME 2: RELEASE ERA:

 

The title track to the album, “Release,” was remixed NUMEROUS times across a wide range of CD singles, vinyl records, and promos.

Samradh, Samradh” – Iarla and James performed this song at the end of the band’s shows during the first tour.  However, it has never appeared on an ACSS album.  A studio version can be found on a Realworld Records sampler, and Iarla and James have performed it live on KCRW’s “Morning Becomes Eclectic” program.

A CD and 12-inch single featuring remixes of “Inion” (from Vol. 1) and “Riding the Waves” was released by Pendragon Records.  However, these remixes are NOT official and are NOT sanctioned by the band.

”Eireann” (live) – A live studio recording of this song can be found on the album “WDET Live! Volume 2.”

”Magic and Mayhem” – This was a CD-ROM game produced by Virgin Interactive in 1999.  ACSS was asked to provide the music, which includes original compositions as well as alternate versions of some tracks from Volumes 1 and 2.

 

VOLUME 3: FURTHER IN TIME ERA:


"When You’re Falling” – This song was remixed for the CD single release.

”Persistence of Memory” – This song was remixed by Rae and Christian. An edit appeared on a Realworld Sampler, but the full-length version wasn’t released until it showed up on the POD album.

”Onwards” – This was remixed by Ski Oakenfull for a CD single that never happened.  A streaming version of the track can be heard at www.realworldrecords.com/afrocelts.

”The Silken Whip” (live) – A live studio recording of this song can be found on one of the CDs in the “Echoes Living Room Concert Series.”

Edits of several songs, including “Go on Through” and “Life Begin Again,” have appeared on various promos and samplers.

 

SEED ERA:


*”Rise Above It” – This song was remixed and edited down from its original 10-minute length for radio play.  It is available on promos only.

”Green (W.I.P. mix)” – This early version of “Nevermore” appears on an obscure Realworld sampler.

”Johnny at Sea” – This song appears on the Japan pressing of SEED.  It is different from the version that saw wide release on POD.

”Deep Channel” – A remix of this song appears on the Simon Emmerson/Phil Meadley collaboration OUTERNATIONALISTS.

 

POD ERA:

 

The songs on POD are themselves remixes, and no additional remixes were released in association with this album.

 

ANATOMIC ERA:

 

The band composed original music for the film “Hotel Rwanda,” two tracks of which can be heard on the soundtrack CD for the film.

”When I Still Needed You” and “My Secret Bliss” were both edited for radio play in the US.

”Sene (TransGlobal Underground Remix)” – This track is only available as a free MP3 download from www.realworldrecords.com/afrocelts.

Reportedly, Future Sound of London also remixed some music for ANATOMIC.  As of this writing, however, that work has not been released.

 

WHAT’S THE DEAL WITH THE VERSION OF “JOHNNY AT SEA” FOUND ONLY ON THE JAPANESE VERSION OF SEED?

 

According to Martin Russell, the version heard on POD was intended to be the only official mix of this song.  The version heard on the Japanese edition of SEED, which includes an Irish-flavored melody at the end, “somehow escaped from the vaults” without the band’s knowledge.  The band had intended to use the accordion melody heard on the Japanese edition of SEED on a different song they were working on.

 

WHAT ARTISTS HAVE REMIXED ACSS’S MUSIC?

 

Jeremy Wheatley (“Whirl-Y-Reel” radio edit)
Richard Norris /Radar (“Sure-As-Not,” “Inion”)
Rollo and Sister Bliss from Faithless (“Release”)
Masters at Work (“Release”)
BiPolar (“Release”)
Rae and Christian (“Persistence of Memory”)
Ski Oakenfull (“Onwards”)
Wren and Morley (“When You’re Falling”)
DJ Toshio (“Full Moon, Low Tide”)
TransGlobal Underground (“Sene”)


And of course, the band members themselves, especially Simon, Martin and Mass, have remixed the group’s work on numerous occasions, most notably for the POD album.

 

IS THE BAND’S MUSIC FOR THE COMPUTER GAME “MAGIC AND MAYHEM AVAILABLE ON CD?

 

The soundtrack is not available as a CD release.  However, the music is included as 12 audio tracks on the game CD-ROM (note: these tracks do not have official song titles, although you will recognize alternate versions of “Release,” “Sure-As-Not,” and others).  If you own the game, you can simply copy the twelve audio files onto your computer or iPod or burn them onto a CD.

 

WHAT IS “NOODLE?”

 

Noodle was an interactive musical game, developed by Realworld Multimedia.  The first version was included as an enhanced track on VOLUME 2: RELEASE.  It enabled users to manipulate on-screen icons to “remix” their own version of “Whirl-Y-Reel.”  An upgraded version was included on VOLUME 3: FURTHER IN TIME, enabling users to create their own remix of “Colossus.”  Realworld intended to expand Noodle into an established online community encompassing a number of artists on the label, not just ACSS.  For a while, the “Noodle Heaven” web site was launched, enabling users to remix a number of tracks from the Realworld catalog (I seem to remember tracks from Peter Gabriel, Adrian Sherwood, and ACSS’s “Deep Channel”).  However, the Noodle idea never really seemed to take off.

 

Recently, Realworld revamped the idea into a more streamlined and user-friendly web site at www.realworldremixed.com.  The web site provides branched audio of songs in .wav or .mp3 format, which can be downloaded and manipulated by using a
number of commercial mixing platforms such as Ableton Live, Sony Acid xPress, and Reaper.  One of the first song offerings from the site is ACSS’s “My Secret Bliss.”

 

HAS THE BAND PRODUCED ANY MUSIC VIDEOS?

 

Yes!  Here’s a list:


Whirl-Y-Reel (Beard and Sandals Mix – Radio Edit)” – This clip incorporated footage from WOMAD Reading, and can be seen on the EPK (Electronic Press Kit) for VOLUME 1.
”Release” – This was the first “official” ACSS music video, featuring Iarla and other band members in a darkened street setting.
"When You’re Falling” - The band’s most famous song was accompanied by a music video featuring high quality computer graphics and a cameo appearance by Peter Gabriel.  It can be found on the bonus DVD accompanying POD.
”Persistence of Memory” – This video was originally created during the VOLUME 3 era using an edited version of the album track.  Later, the same images were married to the Rae and Christian mix of “Persistence of Memory” for inclusion on the POD DVD.  The original version can be seen on the Realworld Notes #13 CD-Extra.
”North” – Martin Russell created a special 5.1 surround mix of the original track from VOLUME 3, and it was married to a mind-bending video collage featuring performance footage and computer animation.  This video was included on the POD DVD.

 

WHAT ARE UILLEANN PIPES?

 

Uilleann pipes are a unique form of bagpipes originating in Ireland. The uilleann pipes bag is inflated by means of a small set of bellows strapped around the waist and operated by the right arm.

 

WHAT IS A BODHRAN?

 

The bodhran is an Irish frame drum ranging anywhere from 10" to 26" in diameter, with most drums measuring from 14" to 18". The sides of the drum are 3 1/2" to 8" deep. A goat skin head is tacked to one side (although today, synthetic heads, or new materials like kangaroo skin, are sometimes used). The other side is open ended for one hand to be placed against the inside of the drum head to control the pitch.

 

WHAT IS A KORA?


The kora is a 21 string harp-lute used extensively by Mandingo peoples in West Africa. It uses a large calabash cut in half and covered with cow skin as a resonator, and has a notched bridge like a lute or guitar. The sound of a korais like a harp, though when played in the traditional style, it bears a closer resemblance to flamenco guitar techniques.

 

WHAT ARE “TALKING DRUMS?”

 

Also known as the tama, the “talking drum” is a drum whose pitch can be regulated to the extent that it is said the drum "talks". The player puts the tama under one shoulder and beats the tama with a stick. The tama player raises the pitch by tightening the strings and can produce highly informative sounds to convey complicated messages.

 

WHAT IS A BALAFON?

 

The balafon is a pentatonic or heptatonic xylophone of West Africa. The Susu and Malinké people of Guinea are closely associated with it. It usually has 18-21 keys. The keys are cut from rosewood, and suspended on a bamboo frame, over gourd resonators of graduated sizes resulting in a continuous nasal buzzing sound due to small holes of spider paper in the gourds.

 

WHAT IS A DJEMBE?

 

A djembe, also known as djimbe, jembe, jenbe, yembe or sanbanyi in Susu; is a skin covered drum shaped like a large goblet and is meant to be played with bare hands. It is a member of the membranophone family of musical instruments: a frame covered by a membrane made of one of many products, usually animal skin. The djembe originated in West Africa, where it became an integral part of the area's music and tradition.

 

WHAT ARE DHOL DRUMS?

 

The dhol is a drum (a percussion musical instrument) widely used in Persia, Armenia, the Indian/Pakistani province of Punjab and Gujarat. It is said to have been invented by the Persian/Afghanis. The dhol is a rather bulky double-sided barrel drum played mostly as an accompanying instrument to the traditional Punjabi dance of Bhangra, the traditional dance of Gujarat, Raas, and the religious music of Sufism, Qawwali.

 

WHAT IS A HURDY GURDY?

 

A hurdy gurdy is a stringed musical instrument with several strings arranged so that they can be played simultaneously by a rotating wheel covered with rosin. It is essentially a mechanical violin. This method of producing sound is similar to string instruments such as the violin, but because the hurdy gurdy produces several notes together, with a melody accompanied by chords made by "drone strings", its sound is perhaps more comparable to that of bagpipes. For this reason, the hurdy gurdy is often accompanied by the bagpipes, particularly in French and contemporary Hungarian folk music.

 

WHAT IS A BOUZOUKI?

 

The bouzouki is the mainstay of modern Greek music, and is also found in Irish music. It is a stringed instrument with a pear-shaped body and a very long neck. The bouzouki is a member of the 'long neck lute' family and is similar to a
mandola. The front of the body is flat and is usually heavily inlaid with mother-of-pearl. The instrument is played with a plectrum and has a sharp metallic sound.

 

WHAT IS A N’GOMA DRUM?

 

The N’goma is a traditional African drum found in Nigeria and elsewhere.  In Congolese, n’goma means “drum.”

 

WHAT IS A TABLA?

 

The tabla is a widely popular South Asian percussion instrument used in the classical, popular and religious music of the northern Indian subcontinent. The instrument consists of a pair of hand drums of contrasting sizes and timbres. The term tabla is derived from an Arabic word which means "drum", and this attests to its status as a product resulting from the fusion of musical elements from indigenous Hindu and Central Asian Muslim cultures that began in the late 16th century. The black spot found on each of the drums that make up the set of tablas, called Syahi, is made of a mixture of flour, water and iron filings.
Traditionally, it was applied and removed many times but it is now permanently attached to the drum.

 

WHAT IS A CITTERN?

 

The cittern is a stringed instrument of the lute family dating from the Renaissance. With its flat back, it was much simpler, and therefore cheaper, to construct than the lute, in addition to which it was easier to play and keep in tune and, being smaller and less delicate, far more portable. Thus, although it was played by all classes, the cittern was a premier instrument of casual music making for the common people, much like the guitar at the present day. The name "cittern" has also been applied in the late twentieth century to a number of variant members of the mandolin family.

 

WHAT IS A KALIMBA?

 

Also known as the marímbula (a member of the Mbira family of instruments, first created by Queen Marimba of the Wakamba). The kalimba is a folk musical instrument of the Caribbean Islands with its roots in African instruments. The instrument has a number of other names, such as Bass Kalimba (also spelled Calimba), Rhumba box, and box lamellaphone. The sound of the marimbula is produced by plucking the free ends of springy plates ("tongues" or keys) attached by one end to a resonator box. In Africa it is also known as the marimba, likembe, nadimba, uboh, sansa or congoma.

 


 

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