Friday, December 5, 2008
Just because you happen to live in Pittsburgh doesn't mean you can't savor the voices -- and we do mean voices plural -- of distant lands. Say, those of the republic of Tuva, nestled between Siberia and Mongolia, with its confounding and strangely beautiful tradition of throat-singing. A throat singer manipulates his or her voice to produce natural several simultaneous harmonic overtones, including high, bird-like melodies and impossibly low growls. That's about the best I can describe it, other than to say that it's extremely cool -- if you need more convincing evidence, search YouTube for "Tuvan throat singing."
Alash, performing at the exotic Your Inner Vagabond in Lawrenceville at 8 p.m., Sun., Dec. 7, is an award-winning Tuvan music ensemble, who The Washington Post has described as "utterly stunning." And they're not afraid to mix it up with some Western musical influences as well; they're touring with Béla Fleck & the Flecktones this month in the States, and appear as guests on the Flecktones' most recent album.
In Pittsburgh, though, they appear with locally-based AppalAsian Trio, featuring Mimi Jong on erhu, Jeff Berman on dulcimer and Sue Powers on banjo. The show, which takes place costs $15 and is open to all ages, BYOB permitted. For more info, visit the web sites for Alash or Your Inner Vagabond.