Putumayo Presents:

Women of the World: Acoustic

Album Review

An exploration of contemporary acoustic music by some of the world's leading female artists

On March 8, 2007, women all over the world will celebrate International Women's Day. A national holiday in many countries and commemorated by the United Nations, International Women's Day is the story of ordinary women as makers of history. Though often divided by national boundaries and by ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic and political differences, this day allows women everywhere to look back on a tradition of struggle for equality, justice, peace and development. As a tribute to this tradition, Putumayo World Music is releasing an album that literally sings its praises. Women of the World: Acoustic is an exploration of acoustic music by some of the world's leading female artists.

Some of the women featured on Women of the World: Acoustic such as Sandrine Kiberlain and The Wailin' Jennys are already well known in various parts of the world. Kiberlain is known first and foremost as an actress, having appeared in over 20 French films, "M'envoyer des Fleurs" is from her first and only album: Manquait Plus Qu'ça. The career of Canadian trio The Wailin' Jennys' has been sparked by Garrison Keillor, an avid fan who has featured them on his radio program A Prairie Home Companion on numerous occasions. The group harmonizes together beautifully on "One Voice," a song from the group's debut album 40 Days, which won the 2005 Juno Award for best roots/traditional album.

The half-Icelandic, half-Italian Emiliana Torinni is perhaps most recognizable as the voice behind the enchanting "Gollum's Song" from Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. She has also toured with Thievery Corporation and penned Kylie Minogue's "Slow". For her second album from which "Sunnyroad" is taken, Torinni stripped away the elements and recorded just her voice and guitar, making this a perfect addition. Likewise, Algeria's Mona traded in her rhymes of her alternative rap career for the softer strains of traditional sounds from her Andalusian birthplace to deliver "Sekna."

Other artists on Women of the World: Acoustic have found their inspiration down different paths. Marta Topferova was born in the Czech Republic, but found her voice in the folk traditions of Latin America after discovering the Chilean protest group Inti-Illimani at an early age. Colombia native Marta Gomez contributes the haunting "Paula Ausente," a song based on the book "Paula" by noted Chilean author Isabelle Allende.

This celebration of women's voices also includes those artists whose music hits closer to home. Cameroon's Kaïssa contributes the heartfelt "Wa," a tribute to her late sister, while Popular Croatian singer Tamara Obravac creates music inspired by the Istrian folk music from her homeland. Greece's Anastasia Moutsatsou brings her country's rich traditional musical legacy to the fore with "Ola Ta Aiskola," and Lura sings in the Kriolu dialect (Portuguese Creole) of the Cape Verde islands. "Bida Mariadu" is from Lura's second album, which revives classic Cape Verdean music that has been largely lost.

Luca Mundaca is originally from Chile moving to a small town south of Sao Paulo, Brazil with her family when she was six; she now resides in the U.S. Mundaca fuses her contemporary folk sensibilities with bossa nova and contributes the lovely and lilting "Nao se Apavore

Women of the World: Acoustic is the third release in Putumayo's successful acoustic series, which includes Acoustic Africa and Acoustic Brazil. It also is the fifth release in Putumayo's "Women of the World" series that includes Women of Africa and Women of Latin America.

A portion of Putumayo's proceeds from the sale of this album will be donated to the Global Fund for Women in support of their efforts to promote and defend the human rights of women and girls around the world.

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