Posts Tagged ‘jodhpur riff’

Musical Adventure In Assam And Rajasthan

Posted on May 15th, 2013 in Music Travel, Recent posts by .

Georgie Pope gives a taste of a new musical adventure in Assam

Photography by Georgie Pope

Hello, This is Georgie Pope who runs the Songlines trips to the Jodhpur RIFF festival each October. I’ve just returned from a test run of our new Musical Adventure in Assam, which will run next April. I was joined by nine other adventurers (aged from two to seventy-two) to explore this lusciously beautiful but remarkably lesser-trodden north-east Indian state – a region of Vaishnavite monastries, tea plantations and extraordinary hospitality. We met musicians in their homes, tried out their instruments, explored the fabulous natural landscapes and ate far too much local food. 

Half way through the trip, we hired a private ferry boat to cross the Brahmaputra and reach the magical island of Majuli. This vast and ever-morphing river island is a treasure-trove of art, music and wildlife. After checking in to our eco-huts-on-stilts – built in traditional Mishing tribe style from woven cane and bamboo – we set off across the island to meet my music-loving, dancing friend Govinda the monk.  

Govinda, like the other celibate monks of the Kamalbari Satra, is slim and muscular, with long hair and a beautiful face which exudes spiritual warmth and wisdom. He’s one of the many musical hosts who enrich our tours with true passion for their subject. Like his fellow ‘inmates’, he’s a vegetarian who eats only what is grown within the monastery, and spends his days worshipping lord Vishnu (whose avatar as the flute-playing Krishna you may be more familiar with) by singing borgeet and dancing the extraordinarily refined Satriya dance.

After affording us a rare glimpse into one of the monk’s rehearsals, Govinda took us to meet his brother – married and living in a conventional extended-family home on the island – who is the music master at a local school. The teachers and children presented us with the spring time dance of the Bihu – the festival this tour is timed to coincide with – as well as renditions of Borgeet, endless chai and biscuits. We returned to our eco-camp aglow with the extraordinary musical ebullience and hospitalitiy of the island, which I can’t wait to return to next year.

Experience the magic of Jodhpur RIFF with Songlines Music Travel

India – Rajasthan Musical Expedition                  

In association with 

15 days – Oct 8-22 2013
12 days – Oct 11-22 2013

I’m off to Rajasthan in October for another Musical Adventure, culminating in the Jodhpur RIFF – that sumptuous showcase of Rajasthani music and talent from around the world. To read more about my work on Indian music, visit

You can join Georgie on her trip to Jodhpur RIFF with Songlines Music Travel. With us you will get a chance to explore of a vibrant living culture featuring hand-picked musicians, whilst being guided by a artist or musicologist, so there’s time to absorb the atmosphere and get to know personalities as well as places. 

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Songlines’ recommended festival list for 2013 announced…

Posted on March 7th, 2013 in News, Recent posts by .

Our definitive guide to music festivals around the world

The June issue of Songlines (#92) – on sale April 26 – includes this year’s definitive festival guide featuring Songlines Top 10 UK Summer Festivals and Songlines 25 of the Best International Festivals. 

Hearing great music in the comfort of your home is one thing, but nothing beats pulling on your mud-caked wellies, slapping on a generous helping of factor 50 and heading out into a field to really experience the music. Therefore we have handpicked the top festivals you should visit to experience the best the world and folk music scenes have to offer.

Here are the Songlines recommendations:

Africa Oyé
Cambridge Folk Festival
Hay Festival
HebCelt Festival
Glastonbury Festival
Larmer Tree Festival
Norfolk & Norwich Festival
Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Towersey Festival
WOMAD Charlton Park

Africa Festival, Germany
Afrikafestival Hertme, The Netherlands
Afro-Pfingsten Festival, Switzerland
Druga Godba, Slovenia
Essaouira Gnawa & World Music Festival, Morocco
Ethno Port, Poland
Fes Festival of Sacred Music, Morocco
FMM Sines, Portugal
Førde Traditional and World Music Folk Festival, Norway
Guca Trumpet Festival, Serbia
Jeonju INT’L Sori Festival, South Korea
Jodhpur RIFF (Rajasthan International Folk Festival), India
Kriol Jazz Festival, Cape Verde
La Grande Rencontre, Canada
Music Meeting, The Netherlands
Musiques Metisses, France
Oslo World Music Festival, Norway
Rainforest World Music Festival, Borneo
Sauti za Busara, Zanzibar
Savannah Music Festival, USA
Sommelo Festival, Finland
Sziget, Hungary
Ulsan World Music Festival, South Korea
Warsaw Cross Culture Festival, Poland
WOMADelaide, Australia

For full profiles of each festival, pick up a copy of the June 2013 (#92), on sale April 26.

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Songlines Music Travel Trips 2013

Posted on October 27th, 2012 in Music Travel, Recent posts by .

The weather is turning chilly and the sun is disappearing, so it’s only natural that we start daydreaming about trips to sunny locals. But if you daydream of more than just beach towels and colourful drinks with tiny umbrellas, then a music safari – full of exciting sounds and culture – may be just what the doctor ordered.

Songlines Music Travel is delighted to announce our list of exclusive music trips for 2013.

(c) Alex Robinson

Cuba – New Year
December 29 2012 – January 12 2013
December 29 2013 – January 13 2013 
Enjoy a new year like no other in Havana before heading East. 

Jamaica – Caribbean Vibrations
January 2-13 2013
Experience Jamaica’s extraordinary music ’on the rock’, whilst enjoying the extraordinary landscape, beautiful beaches and tasty food of this vibrant island.

Brazil – Carnival in Recife
February 5-15 2013
Celebrate in the world’s biggest and best street parties during the Brazilian Carnaval season. Leave your inhibitions behind and prepare for a riot of sounds and colour.

Bamako, Ségou and the Festival on the Niger*
February 9-18 2013
February 9-19 2013
Visit the capital Bamako and further along the Niger, the charming town of Ségou as it celebrates the Festival on the Niger, one of the best festivals in West Africa. 

Zanzibar – Sounds of the Spice Islands
February 11-18 2013
February 11-22 2013
Explore the wonderful sounds of the Spice Islands, including Sauti Za Busara festival.

Jerez – Flamenco Festival
March 1-4 2013
Andalucía is the birthplace of flamenco, making Jerez a fitting host for the world’s leading flamenco festival. Enjoy shows by top festival acts and flamenco at its roots in the lively clubs and bodegas

Senegal – Never Mind the Mbalax
March 15-24 2013
March 15-25 2013
Senegal’s capital, Dakar, is renowned for its mbalax and hip-hop. We also visit the historically important Gorée island and St Louis, West Africa’s first French settlement.
Cape Verde – Kriol Jazz Festival Praia
April 9-16 2013
Home to the world famous ‘barefoot diva’ Cesaria Evora, this festival takes place on one of West Africa’s little-known island nations. 

Cuba – The Music of Cuba
May 4-18 2013
May 11-18 2013 
From Havana to Baracoa, Santiago de Cuba, Guantánamo, Camagüey and Trinidad, exploring the captivating music in each area. 

India – Rajisthan Musical Adventure
October 9-22 2013
Our musical adventure delves into a soul-inspiring part of the world: the desert state of Rajasthan. Stopping off for workshops and seminars with local experts, performances in the desert and interactions with extraordinary artists, the tour culminates in the famous Jodhpur RIFF, the Rajasthan International Folk Festival, hosted in the Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur. 

Lisbon – The Home of Fado
June 13-16 2013
For fans of Mariza and all things fado, discover where Portugal’s most distinctive music was born less than 200 years ago and the sample lively Brazilian and Cape Verdean scenes.

Morocco – Essaouira Gnawa Festival
June 20-24 2013
June 20-27 2013
Each June, the Moroccan Atlantic coastal town of Essaouira hosts the extraordinary Gnawa and World Music Festival. Our tour offers a long weekend trip with two full days to enjoy a range of music and the opportunity to explore the narrow lanes of the old walled medina and the wonderful long beaches beyond.

Malaysia – Rainforest Festival
June 24 – July 1 2013
Sarawak, on the northern coast of Borneo, retains a strong cultural identity and is home to a diverse range of indigenous ethnic groups, and the extraordinary Rainforest Festival. 

Serbia – Guca Brass Band Festival
August 7-12 2013
Guča’s brass festival, which has been going since 1961, is one of Europe’s wildest events. This trip allows you to enjoy the raucous festival and spend some time exploring the lively city of Belgrade. 

Malawi – Lake of Stars Festival
October 2013 (8 & 11 days) - TBC 

Mali – The Beating Heart of the Mande Empire*
October 12-21 2013
This trip explores the music scene of Bamako, one of the liveliest in Africa, as well as a visit to the Sikasso region and time in Ségou. A genuine insight into local culture and traditions. 

Senegal – Never Mind the Mbalax
November 22 – December 1 2013 

* This trip will run subject to advice from the FCO

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Announcing the best of the summer festivals

Posted on March 22nd, 2012 in News, Recent posts by .

The June issue of Songlines (#84) – on sale April 27 – sees this year’s festival supplement featuring Songlines Top 10 UK Summer Festivals and Songlines 25 of the Best International Festivals.

Get your sun hats, tents and wellies at the ready for another year of festivals full of the most legendary names and the freshest talent on the world music scene. Here are the Songlines recommendations:

Songlines Top 10 UK Summer Festivals
Africa Oyé
Big Session Festival
Cambridge Folk Festival
HebCelt Festival
Larmer Tree Festival
Latitude Festival
Norfolk & Norwich Festival
Rhythms of the World
Shrewsbury Folk Festival
WOMAD Charlton Park

Songlines 25 of the Best International Festivals
Africa Festival, Germany
Chicago World Music Festival, USA
Druga Godba, Slovenia
Essaouira Gnawa & World Music Festival, Morocco
Ethno Port, Poland
Fes Festival of Sacred Music, Morocco
Festival on the Niger, Mali
FMM Sines, Portugal
Førde Traditional and World Music Festival, Norway
Guca Trumpet Festival, Serbia
Jeonju International Sori Festival, South Korea
Jodhpur RIFF, India
Kriol Jazz Festival, Cape Verde
La Grande Rencontre, Québec
Musiques Metisses, France
Oslo World Music Festival, Norway
Rainforest World Music Festival, Borneo
Sakifo Festival, La Réunion
Sauti za Busara, Zanzibar
Savannah Music Festival, USA
Sfinks Festival, Belgium
Sommelo Festival, Finland
Sziget, Hungary
Warsaw Cross Cultural Festival, Poland
WOMADelaide, Australia

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