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Saturday, March 23, 2019 Favoriting
Iberi Choir: Sublime Vocal Polyphony From the Republic of Georgia

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The Republic of Georgia is known for its ancient tradition of vocal polyphony and improvisation. New groups like Iberi - led by a rugby star who gave up the sport to sing - are bringing the tradition into the 21st century.

Iberi sings their way into your hearts on WFMU this Saturday - ahead of an east coast tour including Manhattan shows downtown at Joe's Pub, 425 Lafayette St. Wednesday night April 3rd and a free concert uptown at Our Saviour Lutheran Church, 178 Bennett Avenue (at 189th Street) Sunday afternoon April 7th

Iberi Choir Tour Dates (including April 3-7 in NY, MA & VT):

Iberi's Album, First:

Like and follow Iberi Choir on Facebook:

Background from Iberi's homepage,

In the mountains and along the coasts of Georgia, the ancient country that straddles the Caucasus Mountains, songs have echoed for centuries. Villages and regions developed their own distinctive approaches to melody and harmony, to style and timbre. These songs ring on, finding new life in the rich voices of Iberi. The six-person vocal and instrumental ensemble channels Georgia’s multitude of sounds, exploring the emotional potential of age-old polyphony and traditional instruments. Iberi embrace every aspect of these traditions, including the toasts and feast songs that are intimately entwined with Georgia’s notoriously abundant hospitality, but also the urban folk songs, lullabies, liturgical chants, and historical ballads that still play important roles in everyday moments and grand occasions. The mood varies from dignified and somber to playful and fun, from earthy to otherworldly.

Taking their name from the ancient term of Georgia, Iberia, Iberi started singing together in 2012, at a rehearsal convened by former rugby player and lifelong singer, Bidzina Murgulia. Like the majority of Georgian young people, he had grown up surrounded by singing--”Music is everywhere here”--and gotten hooked. He was inspired to put his own, respectful stamp on centuries-old songs: “I longed for years to start my own choir, to bring my musical vision to life.” He finally decided to set his sports career aside and dedicate himself to a love of music. His collaborators and fellow singers soon became his fast friends, and warmth radiates from the group live.

Murgulia was inspired by Georgian polyphony’s regional diversity and inventive spirit. Though these vocal traditions usually involve three-part harmony, exactly how the voices work together differs wildly from region to region, each bringing out a different breathtaking quality in Iberi’s voices. “Eastern Georgian areas, the main winemaking regions of the country as well as very tiny regions in the nearby mountains, have a more or less similar style of singing. There is a bass drone and two high voices which use melismatic sounds,” explains Murgulia. “In the western part of Georgia, the style is more complicated in terms of harmony. It doesn’t involve a drone, and the bass voice is improvising along with the other two voices. There is also a very special yodeling technique in the Guria and Adjaria regions called krimanchuli, which can be roughly translated as “twisted highest voice.” It’s believed that centuries ago, children used to sing that style to frighten away evil forest creature, but now it’s usually performed by men and often referred to as Georgian Jazz.”

Massive thanks to Juliana Voloz of JV Promotion for bringing Iberi to North America and WFMU, and of course to our illustrious engineer Mark Koch!

This Week's Playlist:

(* = new)

Maialen: Bam Bam Favoriting / Biluzik (0:00:00 Pop-up)

The Hykers: I Want a Break Thru Favoriting / Various Artists: Wake Up You! The Rise and Fall of Nigerian Rock, Vol. 2 (1972-1977) / Now Again (0:06:25 Pop-up)

Dur Dur Band: Jubba Aaka Favoriting / Volume 2 / Analog Africa (0:08:02 Pop-up)

uKanDanZ: Gesse Favoriting / Yeketelale / Buda Musique / * (0:14:38 Pop-up)

Tallawit Timbouctou: Chebiba Favoriting / Hali Diallo / Sahel Sounds / * (0:20:10 Pop-up)

Etran de L'Aïr: Tenere Maliat Favoriting / No. 1 / Sahel Sounds (0:24:07 Pop-up)

Jean Claude Viadère: Moin la Pas Fait Tout Seul Favoriting / Various Artists: Oté Maloya - The Birth of Electric Maloya on Réunion Island 1975-1986 / Strut / * (0:37:36 Pop-up)

Gaby et les Soul Men: Oh Maloya Favoriting / Various Artists: Oté Maloya - The Birth of Electric Maloya on Réunion Island 1975-1986 / Strut / * (0:41:58 Pop-up)

M'Toro Chamou: Wassi de Wale Favoriting / Sika Mila (Le Cri de l’Océan Indien). / * (0:45:50 Pop-up)
Pre-release - officially out in late April

Les Pythons de la Fournaise: Ton Ti Guele Rose Favoriting / SLP! / Catapulte Records (0:51:51 Pop-up)

Iberi: Chela (Live on WFMU) Favoriting (1:02:52 Pop-up)

Iberi: Shen Khar Venakhi (Live on WFMU) Favoriting (1:10:17 Pop-up)

Iberi: Song From Guria Telling the Story of Two Brothers on Opposite Sides During the Ottoman Invasion (Live on WFMU) Favoriting (1:14:59 Pop-up)
This song features the unique krimanchuli (yodel-like) vocal technique from Guria and Adjara in Georgia

Iberi: Celebration Song from Adjara (Live on WFMU) Favoriting (1:22:14 Pop-up)

Iberi: Mravalzhamier (Live on WFMU) Favoriting (1:26:51 Pop-up)

Iriao: Take Five Favoriting / Television Broadcast in Georgia (1:32:50 Pop-up)
The group features members of Iberi

Anda Union: Hoorai Favoriting / Wind Horse (1:38:40 Pop-up)
GIG / GIVEAWAY: We're giving away two pairs of tickets to see Anda Union a week from tonight at Merkin Hall. To get in the running for a pair of tickets to this show OR our other giveaway tonight Email me, Rob W, here, please specify first and if possible second choice among the two concerts available, and please put the word "TIX" in the subject line. The deadline to enter is tonight at midnight; winners will be notified by Monday.

La Patronal: Anacona Favoriting / La Patronal (1:44:04 Pop-up)
GIG / GIVEAWAY: We're giving away one pair of tickets to see La Patronal on Tuesday night at Drom. To get in the running for a pair of tickets to this show OR our other giveaway tonight Email me, Rob W, here, please specify first and if possible second choice among the two concerts available, and please put the word "TIX" in the subject line. The deadline to enter is tonight at midnight; winners will be notified by Monday.

Los Compadres del Ande: La Mecedora Favoriting / Various Artists: Andina: The Sound of the Peruvian Andes - Huayno, Carnaval, & Cumbia 1968 to 1978 / Strut / Tiger's Milk / * (1:48:01 Pop-up)

Los Barbaros del Centro: La Celosa Favoriting / Various Artists: Andina: The Sound of the Peruvian Andes - Huayno, Carnaval, & Cumbia 1968 to 1978 / Strut / Tiger's Milk / * (1:50:19 Pop-up)

Red Baraat: Holi Ke Din Favoriting / Sound the People / Rhyme & Reason (1:53:53 Pop-up)

Sukhwinder Singh & Sunidhi Chauhan: Marjaani Favoriting / Billu Barber (Bollywood OST) / T-Series (2:01:30 Pop-up)

Ajam Band: Norooz Khani Favoriting / Web Only (2:07:00 Pop-up)

Ilana Eliya: Nawroz Favoriting / Nawroz (2:10:12 Pop-up)

Roksonaki: Leti-Pa (A Nowruz Song, Live on WFMU Transpacific Sound Paradise, March 29, 2008 Favoriting (2:14:00 Pop-up)

Refugees For Refugees (Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Tibet via Belgium): Nowruz Favoriting / Amerli / MuziekPublique (2:17:34 Pop-up)

Emilia Amper: Salen (The Seal) Favoriting / Lux (2:26:53 Pop-up)
GIG: This Wed. night, 8 pm @ NuBlu, 151 Ave C

Kronos Quartet & Mahsa and Marjan Vahdat: My Ruthless Companion Favoriting / Placeless / Valley Entertainment / Kirkelig Kulturverksted / * (2:32:17 Pop-up)
GIG: Kronos Quartet Live Performance + Film: A Thousand Thoughts @ Town Hall, 123 W 43rd St. Thurs night April 25th at 8.

Innov Gnawa: Bangara (AkizzBeatzz Remix) Favoriting / Single (2:37:00 Pop-up)
GIG: Disco Tehran Nowruz Party featuring: Innov Gnawa(LIVE), Slavic Soul Party! (LIVE) Nick AM (DJ), DJ Sanna (DJ), Mirza (DJ), Mohandes (DJ) this Wed. night @ Baby's All Right, Brooklyn

Bachir Attar with Elliott Sharp: Rif Rok Favoriting / Jajouka / New York (2:39:19 Pop-up)
GIG: Bachir & Mustapha Attar (of The Master Musicians Of Jajouka) With Ned Rothenberg, Arrington De Dionysio & Ben Bennett @ Roulette, Brooklyn, Sat March 30, 8 pm (Part of Robert Browning's World in Trance Festival)

Rajna Swaminathan: Offering Favoriting / Of Agency and Abstraction (2:46:03 Pop-up)
GIG: Deepal Sanghvi Chodhari (Santoor), Roopa Mahadevan (Vocals), Roshni Samlal (Tabla), and Rajna Swaminathan (Mridangam): Women's Raga Massive Festival Finale @ Rubin Museum Fri March 29, 7 pm

MNMM: Windy City Favoriting / Minimum / * (2:53:35 Pop-up)

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Email here to JOIN the TSP E-MAIL LIST for giveaways, show news!

If you want to be on an email list for special ticket and music giveaways and to hear news about upcoming specials and special events send an email to Rob W here and be sure to write "list" in the subject line.

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Organizations supporting the rights of immigrants and refugees:

(For more suggestions see

National Immigration Law Center: Established in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) is one of the leading organizations in the U.S. exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights of low-income immigrants.

National Immigration Forum: The National Immigration Forum is one of the leading immigrant advocacy organizations in the country, with a mission to advocate for the value of immigrants and immigration to the nation.

New York Immigration Coalition: The New York Immigration Coalition aims to achieve a fairer and more just society that values the contributions of immigrants and extends opportunity to all. The NYIC promotes immigrants’ full civic participation, fosters their leadership, and provides a unified voice and a vehicle for collective action for New York’s diverse immigrant communities.

Arab American Family Support Center (New York City): The Arab-American Family Support Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit, non-sectarian organization that provides culturally and linguistically sensitive services to immigrant communities throughout New York City.

Action NYC: ActionNYC connects New Yorkers to free, safe immigration legal help. You can make an appointment to learn your immigration legal options and get immigration application assistance. There are ActionNYC sites in all five boroughs. Appointments are required. Your appointment will be in your language.

Immigration Equality is the leading LGBTQ immigrant rights organization in the country. It provide s advice and legal services to thousands of LGBTQ and HIV-positive immigrants seeking refuge, fair treatment, and freedom in the United States. The work is truly lifesaving because there are nearly 80 countries around the world where it is a crime to be LGBTQ, with consequences up to and including the death penalty. For this reason, Immigration Equality fights to obtain asylum in the United States for LGBTQ and HIV-positive refugees - with a remarkable 99% win rate.

International Refugee Assistance Project: The International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) organizes law students and lawyers to develop and enforce a set of legal and human rights for refugees and displaced persons. Mobilizing direct legal aid and systemic policy advocacy, IRAP serves the world’s most persecuted individuals and empowers the next generation of human rights leaders.

International Rescue Committee: The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future.

Kids in Need of Defense (KIND): KIND serves as the leading organization for the protection of children who enter the US immigration system alone and strives to ensure that no such child appears in immigration court without representation. We achieve fundamental fairness through high-quality legal representation and by advancing the child's best interests, safety and well-being.

Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF): AALDEF is a national organization that protects and promotes the civil rights of Asian Americans by combining litigation, advocacy, education, and community organizing. Issues / focus include immigrant rights, civic participation and voting rights, economic justice for workers, language access to services, educational equity, housing and environmental justice, and the elimination of anti-Asian violence, police misconduct, and human trafficking.

Make the Road New York (MRNY): MRNY builds the power of Latino and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice through organizing, policy innovation, transformative education, and survival services.

Make the Road New Jersey (MRNJ): Make the Road New Jersey builds the power of immigrant and working class communities in New Jersey to achieve dignity and justice through community organizing, legal and support services, transformative education and policy innovation.

Listener comments!

  6:04pm M&K:

Rock on!
  6:05pm John from Florham Park:

Hello fellow trans listeners
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 6:07pm Bas NL:

Hi Rob & all!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:12pm Rob W:

Hi Bas, John, M&K and everyone, thanks for listening and for your support during our fundraiser! It's nice to be "back to normal" this week...
  6:13pm John from Florham Park:

@rob or as normal as this station gets
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:15pm Smilty69:

Hello Rob & friends! I'm looking forward to tonight's performance.
  6:16pm Abby Normal:

  6:17pm 2904ConTO:

Dang that was sik
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 6:31pm chresti:

Hello Rob W ! Hello TSP paradise!
Avatar 6:32pm northguineahills:

After a 3 week layoff, I'm finally harvesting chilis again *pants*
  6:34pm John from Florham Park:

@cherstie hello
@NGH howdy
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 6:41pm chresti:

Hi Johrn and ngh
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 6:44pm chresti:

Sounds so very nice
  6:48pm John from Florham Park:

Love it Chersti
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 6:50pm Granny Spicy Tuna:

hello, everyone!
  6:56pm John from Florham Park:

@granny in the house
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 7:03pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Good evening, Rob and worldly listeners.
  7:04pm Jocelyn:

Happy Birthday NGH!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:04pm Rob W:

Good evening Ken, Spicy, everyone!
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 7:06pm chresti:

Happy birthday every day
  7:17pm John from Florham Park:

@KFHP howdy
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:18pm maestroso:

Hi Rob! Wow, this is beautiful, thanks for bringing this to us, and thanks Iberi for coming to WFMU!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:19pm Rob W:

Thanks maestroso!
  7:20pm John from Florham Park:

@rob this show and others have opened me up to other forms of music thank you
  7:20pm 2904ConTO:

Sums up my relationship w my brother
  7:24pm elgaree l'amour:

Another stellar program. There's more than a 1000 yrs legacy in Iberi's music but especially the lyrics. Most of this is lost on western listeners. This is powerful
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:24pm Rob W:

Thanks John from Florham Park and well I hear you, 2904ConTO...
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 7:24pm chresti:

to sing happy birthday every day, wow!
  7:26pm slawooy:

Hi all! Rob Is this also prerecorded? There was an amazing Georgian song used in ‘Breaking Bad’
  7:28pm 2904ConTO:

Fantastic music and I love my brother. Although i dont understand the language and the words I imagine he would enjoy the Iberian yodel
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:28pm Rob W:

Hi slawooy - yes, we recorded this during their tour last summer - they're coming back for a short tour April 3-7. As for Breaking Bad - thanks - you'd think I'd remember that because we watched the whole series but I don't - I'll have to look that up!
Avatar 7:31pm sispus:

I always thought it is a turkish song. there is a very well-known turkish version of it: "cilveloy nanay da"
  7:35pm 2904ConTO:

What!? Dude!
Avatar 7:38pm Scott Power:

Wow what a show tonight! Magic.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:44pm maestroso:

Anda Union are great, wish I could see that show.
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 7:55pm chresti:

Tiger's Milk
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 7:55pm chresti:

Avatar 8:01pm northguineahills:

@Jocelyn: Thanks, I ended going to a friend's mixtape party, and being the music nerd I was, I IDed every track. I also got d/crunk for the first time in months and had my first good night's sleep in month....

How was your bday?
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 8:02pm Granny Spicy Tuna:

a gorgeous din!
Avatar 8:03pm northguineahills:

and hallos everybodies!

@Rob Weisberg: I sent you an email of music/topics relevant to your interests ..
  8:05pm Jocelyn:

NGH, you needed that! I hope you're having a fabulous day! I ate cake and listened to my Friday radio shows. It was splendid.
  8:05pm Jocelyn:

NGH, you needed that rest too!
Avatar 8:07pm TDK60:

Just entering. Rob, your rendition of "Sir Patrick Spens" w/Scott & Hoof/Mouth band was very hep. Rousing folk rock! there an EP in the works?
  8:10pm Colleen:

Always enjoy your segment on Wake.... Great show Rob!!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 8:11pm Rob Weisberg:

Thanks TDK60... I don't think so although I would love my better half Katie (who played the role of the late great Dave Swarbrick on fiddle, complete with cigarette in the strings) to do a Britfolk EP!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 8:13pm Megaroni:

Great show tonite TPSP, many thanks!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 8:13pm Rob W:

Thanks Megaroni!
Avatar 8:14pm TDK60:

Ah, didn't know it was Katie! the Fairport/Steeleye sound.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 8:14pm Rob W:

And thanks Colleen too!
Avatar 8:15pm northguineahills:

what TDK said....
  8:16pm Carmichael:

Hear here on the Spens, Rob. You had a sudden Celtic thing happen?
  8:19pm John from Florham Park:

@granny sure is glad to see some fellow glisteners here tonite
Avatar 8:20pm northguineahills:

Missed the Iberi shaving, I'll have to hit it in the archives. Soul Jazz Recs did a great Georgian vocal polyphonic album about a decade ago, but it was more of the Georgian Orthodox Church liturgical tradition.
Avatar 8:21pm TDK60:

Was just reading about Zoroastrianism; wild it still exists. Happy Persian new year.
  8:21pm John from Florham Park:

@NGH they were awesome
Avatar 8:21pm zpulpa:

Happy Spring everyone! I have had myself a day of spring cleaning and I am so excited about a new chapter of sunshine ahead. peace to you all! This is so beautiful and fitting.
  8:23pm John from Florham Park:

@Zpulpa same to you
  8:42pm Carmichael:

Yay Katie! Have to see the archives again.
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 8:43pm chresti:

Zowie zow this is great
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 8:43pm Granny Spicy Tuna:

wait. THIS is a gorgeous din!!!
Avatar 8:47pm northguineahills:

Hard to find star to clicky on this show, due to so much text, We need more text (more info the better!)
Avatar 8:53pm northguineahills:

Granny, chresti, Jocelyn, John, Carmichael y todos amigos, abrazos!. estoy fuera para bebidos
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 9:05pm chresti:

Thanks Rob!
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 9:13pm Granny Spicy Tuna:

i am indeed in a sound paradise right now
Avatar 🌍 Swag For Life Member 10:17pm Michael 98145:

This is always such an excellent program. Thank you ...
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