Sunday, August 27, 2006

Gracias Manu Chao, mille fois merci!

In my past life (circa 1998), when I lived in Paris and led a much more interesting life, mes amis introduced me to Manu Chao. It was some of the most innovative and eclectic music I had ever heard. He is one of the more famous musicians in the world (outside of the U.S. at any rate, can't get it on itunes for example) and I would put him in the "living legend" category. He is a wonderful musician who sings in several languages and infuses his music with a postive message of solidarity and social consciousness. Not like "we are the world" but more like a french resistance song. It gets you excited about seeking out injustice. This summer, Manu Chao traveled through the U.S. for the first time in 4 years. I hopped on Bart over to the People's Republic of Berkeley to see him at the Greek Theatre, and it was the best concert ever. It lasted for over 3 hours and it was too short. He had the crowd excited, entertained, and dancing. I don't even know how many encores they did. You could tell that he and his band enjoyed performing and that they were (I think) pleasantly surprised by the enthusiasm of the crowd and how familiar we all were with his music. At one point, someone threw a EZLN flag on stage and he wore it for the rest of the show. Je ne me rappelle pas d'un autre concert qui m'a autant fasciné ou amusé. Merci beaucoup beaucoup Manu Chao.

P.S. Manu Chao also produced an album for Amadou and Miriam, two blind musicians from West Africa. Beautiful.

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