Compiled by David Henderson (St. Lawrence University)
Along with recent releases, this issue includes a number of films reviewed
in recent issues of the journal that were not previously noted in "Current
Films and Videos.”
Acknowledgements: St. Lawrence University Libraries for financial and technical
General | Africa | Americas | Asia
and Oceania | Europe | Distributor Information
Le blues de l’Orient/Between Two Notes. 2006. Directed by
Florence Strauss (France/Canada). Distributed by the National Film Board
of Canada. DVD, 86 min. Filmmaker Florence Strauss sets out from Paris in
search of the roots of classical Arab music, while uncovering a partially
unknown and hidden aspect of her own heritage. In English or French.
Living the Hiplife. 2007. Directed by Jesse W. Shipley (Ghana/USA).
Distributed by Third World Newsreel. DVD, 61 min. A musical portrait of
street life in urban West Africa. Focuses on hiplife music in Accra, Ghana,
a mix of various African musical forms and American hip-hop.
Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars. 2007. Directed by Zach
Niles and Banker White (Sierra Leone/USA). Distributed by Docurama. DVD,
80 min. Follows bandmates Reuben Koroma, Francis "Franco” Langba,
Efuah Grace, Mohammed Bangura, Arahim Kamara, and Alhadji "Black Nature”
Kamara through their tour of local refugee camps, debut recording session,
and painful return to their country for the first time since the decade-long
civil war in Sierra Leone.
Air Guitar Nation. 2007. Directed by Alexandra Lipsitz (USA).
Distributed by Docurama. DVD, 81 min. Chronicles the birth of the U.S. Air
Guitar Championships, as legions of aspiring rock stars live out their dreams.
Atlantic Records: The House that Ahmet Built. 2007. Written and
directed by Susan Steinberg (USA). Distributed by Rhino Entertainment. DVD,
115 min. Follows Ahmet Ertegun’s remarkable career and its impact
on the world of popular music, while offering an insider’s look at
the recording industry from its beginnings to the present.
Cajón Espiritual: The Music Box of Cuba. 2004. Recorded
by Luke Wassermann, Todd Brown, and John Randall (Cuba/USA). Distributed
by EarthCDs. DVD, 51 min. Features Omí Iná and Obbara, two
talented homegrown rumba groups from Havana. With notes by Lisa
Maya Knauer. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 51/1:175-179.) [Cajon
Espiritual Omi Ina]
Jamesie: King of Scratch. 2006. Produced and directed by Andrea
E. Leland (USA). Distributed by New Day Films, Inc. DVD, 70 min. An audiovisual
ethnography that contextualizes scratch band music, also called fungi
or quelbe, the popular social commentary song form of the Virgin
Islands. In English with English subtitles. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology
Joyful Noise. 2007. Written and produced by Margot Fassler (USA).
Distributed by the Society of Biblical Literature. DVD, 60 min. Presents
Western Christian traditions of psalm singing in the northeastern part of
the United States today.
The Life and Hard Times of Guy Terrifico. 2005. Written and directed
by Michael Mabbott (Canada). Distributed by THINKFilm. DVD, 89 min. A faux
documentary about the rise and fall of fictional country singer Guy Terrifico,
featuring some legendary real-life performers.
Obiní Batá Cuba: Conjunto feminino de percusión,
canto y danza. 2005. Recorded by Luke Wassermann, Todd Brown, and John
Randall (Cuba/USA). Distributed by EarthCDs. DVD, 64 min. Focuses on a group
of women percussionists known as Obiní Batá who specialize
in playing batá drums. With notes by Enrique Zayas. (Reviewed
in Ethnomusicology 51/1:175-179.) [Obini
Bata Cuba: Conjunto feminino de percusion bata]
The Other Side of the Mirror: Bob Dylan Live at the Newport Folk Festival
1963-1965. 2007. Produced and directed by Murray Lerner (USA). Distributed
by Sony BMG Music Entertainment. DVD, 83 min. Includes nearly twenty songs,
covering three consecutive years of Dylan appearances at the famed Rhode
Papá Liborio: El santo vivo de Maguana. 2003. Directed
by Martha Ellen Davis (Dominican Republic/USA). Distributed by Ethnica Publications.
VHS, 57 min. Explores contemporary popular religion and social protest in
the Maguana region of the Dominican Republic, specifically "Liborism,”
a tradition of folk Catholicism based on the popular messianic figure Olivorio
Mateo "Liborio.” In Spanish with no subtitles. (Reviewed in
Ethnomusicology 50/1:172-174.) [Papa Liborio:
El santo vivo de Maguana]
The Rhythm of My Soul: Kentucky Roots Music. 2007. Produced and
directed by Roger Sherman (USA). Distributed by PBS Home Video. DVD, 60
min. Tells the story of country, gospel, mountain, and bluegrass, with rare
and historic film clips of Bill Monroe, Loretta Lynn, and Ricky Skaggs.
Si sos Brujo: A Story of Tango. 2005. Directed by Caroline Neal
(Argentina). Distributed by Facets Multi-Media, Inc. DVD, 79 min. Captures
the story of a group of young Argentine musicians racing to learn and preserve
the elegant and nuanced music played by the legendary tango orchestras of
Buenos Aires in the 1940s and ‘50s. In Spanish with English subtitles.
The Sound of Rio: Brasileirinho. 2006. Directed by Mika Kaurismäki
(Brazil/Finland/Switzerland). Distributed by Milan Records. DVD, 90 min.
Traces choro from 19th-century Rio de Janeiro through its popularity
in the 1920s to its comeback over the past few decades. In Portuguese with
English subtitles.[Mika Kaurismaki]
El Suroeste Dominicano: Encrucijada de Quisqueya y ombligo del mundo/The
Dominican Southwest: Crossroads of Quisqueya and Center of the World.
2004. Directed by Martha Ellen Davis (Dominican Republic/USA). Distributed
by Ethnica Publications. VHS, 57 min. View of the people and music of the
southwestern Dominican Republic, an area noted for its spiritual and political
potency among pre-colonized indigenous people as well as contemporary Dominicans.
In Spanish or English with no subtitles. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology
This Joint Is Jumpin’! 2007. Written and directed by Mark
Hall (USA). Distributed by MPI Home Video. DVD, 94 min. Traces the history
of swing from its first emergence in the 1920s to its current revival across
the United States, Canada, and Europe.
Towncraft: Notes from a Local Scene. 2007. Directed by Richard
Matson (USA). Distributed by Matson Films. DVD, 104 min. Focuses on the
fifth anniversary of independent label Max Recordings, the twelve main bands
on the label, and the history of Little Rock as an influential indie-rock
city for the past fifteen years.
Los Zafiros: Music from the Edge of Time. 2004. Directed by Lorenzo
DeStefano (USA). Distributed by Shout! Factory. DVD, 79 min. A portrait
of Los Zafiros, often referred to as the Beatles of 1960s Cuba. In Spanish
and English with English subtitles.
Asia and Oceania
Drumming Out a Message: Eisa and Okinawan Diaspora in Japan.
2005. Directed by Yoshitaka Terada (Japan). Available as a free rental
from the National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka, Japan. DVD and VHS, 76 min.
Based on fieldwork conducted between 2000 and 2002, this video documents
the 26th annual Eisa Festival held on September 10, 2000, and the activities
of the Banyan Association (Gajimaru-no-Kai), a community support
group developed and based in the Taisho Ward, where about one-third of the
residents are Okinawans or their direct descendents. In Japanese with English
subtitles. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 51/1:173-175.)
A Kabul Music Diary. 2004. Directed by John Baily (Afghanistan/UK).
Distributed by the Royal Anthropological Institute, London, UK. DVD (PAL)
and VHS (NTSC and PAL), 52 min. Chronicles ethnomusicologist John Baily’s
first visit back to Afghanistan, in the fall of 2002, as the city and country
began to shake off twenty-four years of turbulence and begin to reconstruct.
(Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 49/2:341-342.)
Marcel Khalifé: Voyageur. 2004. Directed by Pierre Dupouey
(Lebanon/France). Distributed by Nagam Records. DVD and VHS, 200 min. Timely
and comprehensive portrait of one of Lebanon’s most celebrated musical
figures. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 50/3:533-535.) [Marcel
The Sidi Malunga Project: Rejuvenating the African Musical Bow in India.
2004. Produced by Nazir and Amy Jairazbhoy (India/USA). Distributed by Apsara
Media for Intercultural Education. DVD, 42 min. Documents the events of
a malunga camp—a weeklong camp organized by the directors
in Gujarat to introduce a young generation of potential players to the instrument—and
the results of the project a year later. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology
Sketches of Kerala. 2004. Created by Laurent Aubert, Ravi Gopalan
Nair, Damian Plandolit, Patricia Plattner, and Jonathan Watts (India/Switzerland).
Distributed by the Musee d’ethnographie, Geneva, Switzerland. DVD,
93 min. Includes two substantial ethnographic films of different lengths,
Gods Never Die (52 min.) and The Time of the Puppets (28
min.) a short film called The Three Wise Monkeys (13 min.) that
includes interviews with the three primary filmmakers (Aubert, Watts, and
Nair), and a bilingual (French/English) booklet with information on each
of the three films. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 51/3:539-541.)
The Voice of Iran: Mohammad Reza Shajarian. 2003. Directed by
Christian Braad Thomsen (Denmark). Distributed by Kollektiv Film ApS. DVD,
97 min. Documents a live performance of Iranian traditional music as well
as an interview with Mohammad Reza Shajarian, Iran’s foremost art
vocalist. In Persian with English subtitles. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology
Glastonbury. 2007. Directed by Julien Temple (UK/USA). Distributed
by the THINKFilm. DVD, 138 min. Focuses on the spirit, characters, and sensory
experiences of the Glastonbury Festival over the last three decades. Featuring
performances by David Bowie, Coldplay, Radiohead, Oasis, Chemical Brothers,
Velvet Underground, and Primal Scream.
Sevdah: The Bridge that Survived. 2004. Directed by Mira Erdevicki
(Bosnia/UK). Distributed by Arcimboldo Productions Ltd. VHS, 60 min. Documentary
primarily about the music and musicians of the band Mostar Sevdah Reunion
(MSR), but also about the 1990s war in Bosnia and its effects on people
and culture. (Reviewed in Ethnomusicology 50/1:176-178.)
Apsara Media for Intercultural Education
13659 Victory Boulevard #577
Van Nuys, CA 91401
Arcimboldo Productions Ltd.
902 Broadway FL 9
New York, NY 10010
P.O. Box 56
Makanda, IL 62958
Facets Multi-Media, Inc.
1517 West Fullerton Avenue
Chicago, IL 60614
Kollektiv Film ApS.
DK 1462 Copenhagen
133 West 25th Street, Suite 6W
New York, NY 10001
MPI Home Video
16101 South 108th Avenue
Orland Park, IL 60467
65 boulevard Carl-Vogt
P.O. Box 842082
Houston, TX 77284
National Film Board of Canada
1123 Broadway, Suite 307
New York, NY 10010
National Museum of Ethnology Multimedia Section
Information System Department 10-1
Senri Expo Park Suita
New Day Films, Inc.
P.O. Box 1084, 190 Route 17M
Harriman, NY 10926
PBS Home Video
The Royal Anthropological Institute
50 Fitzroy Street
London W1T 5BT
2042A Armacost Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Society of Biblical Literature
The Luce Center
825 Houston Mill Road
Atlanta, GA 30329
Sony BMG Music Entertainment
72 Madison Avenue, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10016
Third World Newsreel
545 Eighth Avenue, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10018