Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Womadelaide 2015 - the final flashback

scarves Vic Simms and the Painted Ladies
Vic Simms and the Painted Ladies.
This is the kind of interesting act that keeps me coming back to this festival. Vic Simms recorded the first black protest album in Australia, The Loner. It was 1973 and he was serving a 7-year sentence in Bathurst Gaol at the time. Simms was permitted to record his album because it was to be part of a PR exercise and he was subsequently sent on tours of prisons and shopping malls. (More about the album here). He had previously been discovered by Col Joye as an 11 year old singer, and released a single at 15.

The album and Vic's career sort of disappeared after that - maybe in part because he refused to continue be used as a kind of tame black prisoner for positive press.

A couple of years ago the album was remastered and reissued. And a musician called Luke Peacock became interested in re-recording the songs, getting in touch with Vic and involving him in the project.

Now, revisiting this story has reminded me that I ought to get hold of the original for myself, and maybe have a listen to the remake too.

The Painted Ladies with Vic SImms flavia coelho2
Brazilian Flavia Coelho, not totally my thing musically but fun to be there/listen/watch/shoot.
Flavia Coelho
Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino
Folk music and dance from Southern Italy - these people have been doing their thing a long time and they really know how to put on a show. Very enjoyable.
Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino bandCanzoniere Grecanico Salentino
Che Sudaka punks
Che Sudaka
From Spain - got together in 2002 as illegal immigrants from Argentina and Colombia. Super high-energy 'Mestizo' punks.

Che Sudaka

I was so excited about Buffy Sainte-Marie. Native American singer, star, activist and all round icon. She was awesome.

Buffy Sainte-Marie P3090629 Sinead
And lastly, Sinead O'Connor. I loved her set, her voice was fantastic, and I was inspired to buy the album - though musically its a bit middle of the road, I really like her songs. They are really full of pain and trauma though, and it's even more of a sad listen lately, given her recent mental health troubles. Great to see she's been out and about recently, with a moving if rough Bowie tribute performance.

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