Ashley MacIsaac, however, has gone a very different route
with the same music. Though he still plays the traditional jigs and reels, punk
and blues have been fused with his style as well. A song may start off with simple
drums and electric guitars, ready to sound like another 90’s grunge song or a 3-chord
punk song…then just before it gets boring, MacIsaac’s fiddle jumps in bringing
a wonderful sense of the traditional fiddle as a rock instrument, often playing
it as an electric. His style ranges in experimentalism from the electronic aspect
being hugely implemented, creating a sort of traditional Irish rock/electronica
sound with sampling and artificial beats in a punk rock style (such as in the song
“Sleepy Maggie”), to a more down-to-earth, less spacey, blues-influenced
sound (such as the song “Lay Me Down”). MacIsaac has his share of energy
as well, dancing onstage during performances in combat boots and a kilt (in traditional
Scottish fashion, if you know what I mean). For anyone who enjoys folk (especially
Celtic) mixed well with electric guitars and electronic samplers without being overly
“clubby,” this is one artist that you must check out.
If you enjoy Gypsy rythms, pop, and French
folk music, then you might like the work of Khaled.
Rai music is associated with Northern Africa, especially Algeria. An example of
rai is the work of Khaled, a highly popular composer and singer in both France and
the Arabic world. Remember that funny car chase in the movie “The Fifth Element”
with Bruce Willis? The music that was playing was one of Khaled’s biggest hits,
“Alech Taadi,” though it didn’t end up on the soundtrack. Khaled has managed
to achieve fusion status by combining the Middle-Eastern sounds of rai with more
European influences such as accordions, violins, and pianos; as well as American
influences including jazz and the electric guitar. His singing is the primary definition
of the style he has created however, with an earthy tone that manages to travel
dozens of notes on a scale within one syllable.
If you like
classic rock and reggae, you might enjoy the
music of Tinariwen.
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