Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)


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What is it? An oil painting of a street musician who played regularly in Limerick city. How was it done? Where can I see it?

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More from The Irish Times Film. Sponsored South Africa: offering the culturally curious a heady mix of flavours. The Story of Home: From ruin to barn conversion. Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber. The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment. You should receive instructions for resetting your password. Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

Screen Name Selection. Only letters, numbers, periods and hyphens are allowed in screen names. She adopted David Banda from an orphanage there after meeting him in , returned in for Mercy James, and again in for the twins Estere and Stella. And for her 60th birthday, she asked fans to do one thing : support a Raising Malawi fund-raiser.

She tried to make Broadway — yes, Broadway — cool. Bless her, who has ever pushed harder and spent more hard-won cachet trying to make musical theater cool? She took the singing lessons.

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Then she returned to pop, and there she stayed. She made gap teeth — yes, gap teeth — cool. That smile. Maybe I speak as one who took a lax approach to the stern recommendations of Big Orthodontics, but who worked a slight space between the teeth better than Madonna? She wickedly played with the idea of another pop star plagiarizing her song. She made innerwear outerwear. She had one of the best diva moments ever — over a hot room. She has writing credits on nearly every one of her hits.


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A lot. She helped transform Marilyn Monroe from a symbol of victimhood to a spokeswoman for unapologetic sexuality. Monroe at that point was in many ways a tragic figure, a woman whose death from barbiturates cemented her status as the sad, sexy girl. With men dancing around her, begging for affection, Madonna made her tribute a statement of sexual assertiveness and power.


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And no other performer has used music video to serially elaborate their personas with a finer mix of creativity, beauty and edge. She was a pioneering ally to L. But in , when Madonna gave her no-holds-barred interview to The Advocate , then the largest voice of gay communities, she showed more understanding of queer issues and identity that any pop star before her, and most who came after.

In the two-part sit-down, Madonna revealed the roots of her gay identification via her early mentors. It was a time when many celebrities spoke about gay people only in the most nervously chaste ways. Madonna, who had earlier released a public-service announcement about safe sex , went further. She endorsed the uncompromising activist group Act-Up, and spoke in sex-positive terms with a comfort and care that was decades ahead of its time.

She had a secret life as a downtown rock star. In a recent Guardian piece , Thurston Moore recalled how Madonna was thoroughly plugged in to the downtown scene when the two were neighbors in New York. Time to dig those up. She set the tone, and the bar, for modern pop megatours.

There were seven dancers and two backup singers, not to mention her band. She made talent scouting a central part of her art. She has had a gift for finding the right people to complement her own skills and open up her world: the fashion designers and stylists, the video directors, the D.

I would rather be Peggy Guggenheim than Harry Cohn. She brought vogue from the ballroom to the living room. Yet, less than one year later, Madonna drew so creatively from that rich demimonde that she wound up providing the ideal conduit between it and Every Mall U.

She then hired them as virtual co-stars on her Blond Ambition tour. She found more than one way to aggravate the Vatican. But Catholicism has kept a close watch on Madonna, too. She dressed up like a clown and performed a show. If you thought Madonna was out of ways to shock people by , her Tears of a Clown show would have been an eye-opener.

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For two performances only so far , in Australia and Miami, Madonna dressed up like a very high-fashion clown — makeup, tricycle, the whole shebang — and performed a night of bizarre comedy, covers and stripped-down arrangements of her songs. Yes, I was there, and there were tears.

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She made the hiring of stylists standard operating procedure. Stars had worked with fashion designers. Part of their bond came from their Catholic upbringings: Both were propelled by a love for its iconography and an aversion to its conservative teachings.


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Madonna moved on, but her decision to work with stylists — among them Paul Cavaco and Lori Goldstein — stuck. She was a part of the most memorable V. Should we let Courtney Love come up, Mr.

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Loder wondered? But it was too late. She was the first great identity artist. The line is fine between lifting a rock on a scene and a five-finger cultural discount. But identity was a game that nobody played better — or with more affection, perversity and provocation — than the white lady in the flamenco dress.

She spoke frankly about having had abortions. But Madonna was among the first major stars to unapologetically admit to having had abortions. She sullied the reputation of entire species of flower with a single off-handed comment. She sullied the reputation of Kevin Costner with a single off-handed comment.

She gagged behind his back. She promoted erotically charged images of same-sex couples. Today, same-sex couples are as much a motif in music videos as choreography. She became briefly British. Madonna took what she needed from a move to London — a hunky husband and a quasi-British accent. But when she got sick of the local tabloids calling her Madge , she returned to America. The accent came with her for a while.

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She turned an MTV ban into cash. She spun an Abba sample into her own disco brilliance. She made her backing singers and dancers household names. Previous page.

Mayihlome: Song by Sibongile Khumalo (South Africa)

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Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series) Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)
Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series) Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)
Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series) Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)
Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series) Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)
Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series) Focus: Music of South Africa: A Century of Traditions in Transformation (Focus on World Music Series)

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