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Tarab Travels with My Guitar[CD]
Ace Australian singer songwriter, Carl Cleves, founding member of THE HOTTENTOTS released his CD of World music style acoustic songs \'Tarab Travels with my guitar\' to accompany his book of the same name (Transit lounge Publishing). The topic of the book is the adventurous quest for Tarab: a place where music and poetry bestow true bliss on the lucky one. And many of the songs glorify music and musicians: from bluegrass (Texan Lion), mbaqanga and country (To Coroico), the Middle East (Mustafa), to Zimbabwean and Brazilian praise songs, to the blues of Big Bill Broonzy and Muddy Waters, Nat King Cole, Jacques Brel, Latin and African musicians. Carl Cleves, was born in Mechelen, a traditional Flemish town in Belgium. Even as a child he would entertain his siblings and schoolmates with his vivid imagination. At 15 he was fronting his own band The Dragons and writing songs. His first recordings were made in Dusseldorf during one of his many escapes from student life, hitchhiking around Europe. He graduated in his Belgian Law Studies and was offered a scholarship to study traditional African music with ethnomusicologist John Blacking in southern Africa. This started off many years of travel throughout Africa, the Middle East, the Orient, the Pacific Region and South America, guitar in hand, acquiring musical skills and an endless supply of stories and songs. His adventurous life has included stints as an antelope trapper in Uganda, relief worker in cyclone struck India, 'cool-'em-down' crooner in a Chilean strip club, radio broadcaster and ethnomusicologist in Africa and fisherman in the South Pacific. Whilst living in Brazil, where he worked for the Federal University of Minas Gerais in research of folkloric music, he became a popular singer and bandleader and released two albums of his songs. Carl\'s nomadic past results in highly original songs which have won numerous awards in the categories of folk, world & roots - most recently, two of the most coveted national Australian Music Awards (Music Oz and the Australian Songwriters Association) for his songs on the latest Hottentots CD \'Turn back the Tide\'. Ranging from polyrhythmic exuberance to intimate subtlety, the personal to the political, styles are interchanged and blended with great ease. Traces of Brazil, Africa, folk, blues and dance are the spice in the stew of Carl's songs. Approach and sound vary widely but always with 'a complete lack of pretence and trendiness' (R. Jasituowicz, Diaspora World Beat). His pallet is as broad as life itself. In 1991 Carl founded The Hottentots & the dance band, Hottentot Party, together with, Parissa Bouas, a Greek-Australian singer-songwriter who became his wife. Since then they have released 4 CDs and taken their music around Australia, Europe and Brazil. In 2006 they traveled to Madagascar for a joint concert with the diva of Malagasy music Hanitra Rasoanaivo, of the band Tarika and traveled 3000 km through the island researching and filming music and rituals. Carl speaks five languages and holds degrees in Law, African Music and Contemporary Composition. Presently, he writes, records, runs workshops and tours with The Hottentots and guest-lectures in Song Writing and World Music at Southern Cross University, Lismore, Australia. He lives in Byron Bay on the east coast of Australia.
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