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Current Films and Videos, Volume 50, No. 3 (Fall 2006)
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Compiled by David Henderson (St. Lawrence University)

Acknowledgements: St. Lawrence University Libraries for financial and technical support.

General | Africa | Americas | Asia and Oceania | Europe | Distributor Information


(No General entries in this issue)


Africa Live: The Roll Back Malaria Concert. 2006. Directed by Mick Csáky (Senegal/France). Distributed by Idéale Audience International. DVD, 166 mins. Documentary of a benefit performance produced by Youssou N’Dour at the Iba Mar Diop Stadium in Dakar, Senegal. Includes performances by Awadi, Salif Keita, Angélique Kidjo, Baaba Maal, Youssou N'Dour, Oumou Sangare, Tinariwen, Rokia Traore, and others. In English, French, and various African languages with subtitles in English, French, Spanish, or Japanese.

Mande Music and Dance. 2005. Directed by Roderic Knight (The Gambia/USA). Distributed by Multicultural Media. DVD, 83 mins. Revised edition of Music of the Mande (originally cited in the current filmography for Ethnomusicology 37/3). Includes eighteen events filmed on Super 8 in 1970 and 1982, with explanatory subtitles in English at the beginning of each section.


Blues Houseparty. 2006 (1989). Directed by Jackson Frost (USA). Distributed by Multicultural Media. DVD, 57 mins. Interviews, conversations, and performances by John Cephas, Phil Wiggins, Archie Edwards, John Jackson, James Jackson, Cora Jackson, Flora Molton, Larry Wise, John Dee Holeman, and Quentin "Fris” Holloway. Described by producer Eleanor Ellis as "an extraordinary gathering of musical friends who are also some of America’s greatest masters of the Piedmont blues.”

Cómo se forma una rumba/How to Create a Rumba. 2005. Directed by Iván Acosta (Cuba). Distributed by MVD Entertainment Group. DVD, 73 mins. Exploration of the history of some of the popular rhythms of Cuba. With segments on various musicians, including José Fajardo, Horacio "El Negro” Hernández, Malena Burke, Aguedo Valdés-Luna, Ulices del Toro, Mirta Gómez, Nelson "El Flaco” Padrón, Art Farmer, Super Son Cubano, and Raíces Habaneras. In Spanish with English subtitles.[como ivan jose hernandez valdes gomez padron raices]

Dave Chappelle’s Block Party. 2006. Directed by Michel Gondry (USA). Distributed by Rogue Pictures. DVD, 103 mins. Comedian Chappelle stages a block party in Brooklyn after travelling across the Midwest and stopping to invite guests from his hometown of Yellow Springs, Ohio. Featuring performances by Kanye West, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Common, the Fugees, Dead Prez, Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, and the Roots.

La décima borinqueña. 2005. Directed by Myriam Fuentes (Puerto Rico). Dmesa redondaistributed by el Proyecto del Cuatro Puertorriqueño. DVD, 27 mins. Recreation of the tradition of the by four jíbaro troubadours, with recollections on the history of the décima by several elder troubadours. In Spanish with English subtitles.[decima borinquena]

Descarga. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 68 mins. Documentary showing excerpts from eight improvisatory music sessions organized in Havana by Santiago "Chaguito” Garzón Rill. In English and Spanish with English subtitles.[garzon rill]

High Tech Soul: The Creation of Techno Music. 2006. Directed by Gary Bredow (USA). Distributed by Plexifilm. DVD, 64 mins. Documentary exploring the emergence of techno music in Detroit, focusing on the creators of the genre—Juan Atkins, Derrick May, and Kevin Saunderson—and including interviews with Richie Hawtin, Jeff Mills, Carl Craig, Eddie Fowlkes, and others.

Hip-Hop Laws of Success. 2006. Directed by Michael Skolnik and Rebecca Chaiklin (USA). Distributed by Image Entertainment. DVD, 50 mins. Russell Simmons, co-founder of Def Jam Records, shares his inspirational stories and insights into the business of hip-hop, and is joined by Jay-Z, Lyor Cohen, Sean "Diddy” Combs, Kevin Liles, Ice Cube, Dame Dash, LL Cool J, and others.

Kill Your Idols. 2006. Directed by Scott Crary (USA). Distributed by Palm Pictures. DVD, 71 mins. Comprehensive guide to New York’s downtown underground post-punk scene over the last thirty years. Featuring interviews with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth, Liars, Black Dice, Arto Lindsay, Glenn Branca, Lydia Lunch, Michael Gira, and others. Winner of the Best Feature Documentary award at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2004.

Mueve la cintura. 2004. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 63 mins. Instructional salsa video in four parts: (1) dance couples with live band; (2) the roots of salsa cubana; (3) salsa cubana basics; and (4) exercises. With explanations and demonstrations by Isaias Rojas, director of the dance company Ban Ra Ra. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Music for Whose Ears? 2005. Directed by David Sutherland and Kaveh Nabatian (Canada). Distributed by Film Ideas, Inc. VHS and DVD, 23 mins. Release of a 2004 episode of the YTV television series, My Brand New Life. Depicts a week-long meeting between Ray, a South Asian bhangra musician from Scarborough, Ontario, and Melanie, an Acadian fiddler from Moncton, New Brunswick.

Pucker up: The Fine Art of Whistling. 2006. Directed by Kate Davis and David Heilbroner (USA). Distributed by Image Entertainment. DVD, 76 mins. Follows several competitors as they converge on Louisburg, North Carolina, for the International Whistling Convention and Competition. Featuring Ernest Barreto and Steve Herbst.

Rap or Die. 2005. Directed by Aaryn Tramill, Michael Jenkins, and Carlos Houston (USA). Distributed by Rap Or Die. DVD, 132 mins. Documentary on the world of underground rap, featuring C-Bo, Battle Cat, Mitchy Slick, I-Rocc, Ecay Uno, Lil CS, Cricet, and Jayo Felony.

Rueda de buen aché. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 43 mins. A group of professional dancers from Santiago de Cuba demonstrates the rueda de casino dance form. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Rueda fresca. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 46 mins. Two amateur dance troupes from Santiago de Cuba demonstrate their innovations to the rueda de casino dance form. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Rumbambeo. 2005. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 75 mins. Documentary of an Afro-Cuban music and dance performance organized in Havana by Santiago "Chaguito” Garzón Rill. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Rumbon tropical. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 63 mins. A staged yet informal party-performance in Havana with the Cuban music and dance group Rumberos de Cuba. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Salsa suelta candela. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 42 mins. Instructional video on salsa suelta, or "loose salsa,” featuring the dance troupe Ban Rara.

Scene not Heard. 2005. Directed by Maori Karmael Holmes (USA). Distributed by Third World Newsreel. VHS, 45 mins. Documentary about women in the Philadelphia hip-hop scene, featuring interviews with pioneer female artists Lady B, Schoolly D, Rennie Harris, Bahamadia, and Ursula Rucker, as well as emerging talents such as Versus, Keen of Subliminal Orphans, and Michele Byrd-McPhee of Montazh.

Susana Baca: Memoria Viva. 2003. Directed by Mark Dixon (Peru/Belgium). Distributed by ArtMattan Productions. VHS, 54 mins. Documentary on the Afro-Peruvian singer Susana Baca, with particular attention given to the lando song form and the Instituto Negrocontinuo in Lima, which was founded by Baca and her husband, Ricardo Pereira. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Tremendo vacilon. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 67 mins. Shot in Havana and Santiago, this film consists of eighteen performance events, some formal and others spontaneous, that display the range of Cuban genres. In Spanish with no English subtitles.

U laka laka la. 2003. Directed by Philip Ross (Cuba/USA). Distributed by Boogalu Productions. DVD, 52 mins. Documentary of Carnaval La Habana 2003, with performances by Grupo de Danza Thaba, Conjunto Folklorico Nacional de Cuba, Carroza Orgullo Latino, Comparsa La Jardinera, and more.

Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music? 2006. Directed by Vickie Hunter and Heather Whinna (USA). Distributed by Blank Stare Films. DVD, 91 mins. Film about the phenomenon of Christian rock, with performances by underground and nationally recognized bands as well as commentary from fans, musicians, observers, and critics from both inside and outside the Christian rock scene. Winner of the Audience Choice award at the Chicago Underground Film Festival in 2004.

Asia and Oceania

(No entries for Asia and Oceania in this issue)


Gargandi snilld/Screaming Masterpiece. 2006. Directed by Ari Alexander Ergis Magnússon (Denmark/Iceland). Distributed by Soda Pictures. DVD (region 2), 84 mins. Documentary on the contemporary music scene in Iceland "that promises little to general audiences and duly fulfills that promise,” writes Philip French of The Observer. With performances by Björk, Eivör Pálsdóttir, Múm, Purrkur Pilnikk, Quarashi, Sigur Rós, and others. In English and Icelandic with English subtitles. [bjork eivor pasdottir mum sigur ros]

Made in Sheffield. 2005. Directed by Eve Wood (UK). Distributed by Plexifilm. DVD, 53 mins. Documents the influential post-punk movement that emerged from Sheffield in the late 1970s, focusing on the Human League, Heaven 17, ABC, Cabaret Voltaire, and Pulp. Includes archival footage and interviews with Phil Oakey, Martyn Ware, Ian Marsh, Chris Watson, Stephen Singleton, Jarvis Cocker, Joanne Catherall, Susan Sully, and John Peel.

Yiddish Soul. 2006. Directed by Nathalie Rossetti and Turi Finocchiaro (Belgium). Distributed by Filmakers Library. DVD, 53 mins. Documents the revival and popularity of Yiddish music in Europe today. With performances by and interviews with artists from all over Europe, featuring especially singers Karsten Troyke from Germany and Shura Lipovsky of the Netherlands. In English, German, Italian, French, and Yiddish with English subtitles.

Distributor Information

ArtMattan Productions
535 Cathedral Parkway, Suite 14B
New York, NY 10025
fax: 212.316.6020

Blank Stare Films

Boogalu Productions

Film Ideas, Inc.
308 North Wolf Road
Wheeling, IL 60090
fax: 847.419.8933

Filmakers Library
124 East 40th Street
New York, NY 10016
fax: 212.808.4983

Idéale Audience International
55, rue des Petites Ecuries
75010 Paris
fax: 311.4801.6536

Image Entertainment
20525 Nordhoff Street, Suite 200
Chatsworth, CA 91311

Multicultural Media
56 Browns Mill Road
Montpelier, VT 05602
fax: 802.229.1834

MVD Entertainment Group
422 Business Center
H-840 North Circle Drive
Oaks, PA 19456
fax: 610.650.9102

Palm Pictures
601 West 26th Street, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10001
fax: 212.360.3609

45 Main Street, Suite 504
Brooklyn, NY 11201
fax: 718.643.7320

El Proyecto del Cuatro Puertorriqueño

Rap Or Die
P.O. Box 16247
San Diego, CA 92176
http:// www.rapordie.com

Rogue Pictures
65 Bleecker Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012
fax: 212.539.4099

Soda Pictures
11-13 Broad Court
London WC2B 5PY
United Kingdom
fax: 44.20.7240.6160

Third World Newsreel
545 Eighth Avenue, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10018
fax: 212.594.6417
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