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South Pacific Islands


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Audio CD, November 23, 2004
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 23, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Putumayo World Music
  • ASIN: B00063MC0W
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #151,638 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Iuliana (Tokelau/Samoa/New Zealand) - Te Vaka
2. Mana Ma'Ohi (Rapa Nui/Easter Island) - Matato'a
3. Sei Ma Le Losa (Tokelau/Samoa/New Zealand) - Te Vaka
4. Abebe (Papua New Guinea) - Telek
5. Haloa Olohega (Tokelau/Samoa/New Zealand) - Te Vaka
6. Nengone Nodegu (New Caledonia) - OK! Ryos
7. Whine Whakairo (New Zealand) - Whirimako Black
8. Nukukehe (Tokelau/Samoa/New Zealand) - Te Vaka
9. Siasi (Papua New Guinea) - O-Shen
10. Co Era So (New Caledonia) - OK! Ryos
11. Watolea (New Caledonia) - Gurejele

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Blessed with stunning natural beauty and unique cultures, the islands of the South Pacific have long symbolized paradise on Earth to outsiders. Of course, life is more complicated than travel brochures and Gauguin paintings would lead one to believe. The people of the South Pacific, like elsewhere, struggle with the impact of modernization and are fighting to revitalize and redefine their traditions before they disappear.

Both Telek and O-shen come from Papua New Guinea, a tropical archipelago of dense rainforests and active volcanoes. Telek combines ancient Tolai traditions and contemporary Western music without compromising his native culture. O-shen, the son of American missionaries who was raised in a remote Papuan village, fuses traditional Pacific music with hip-hop and reggae.

OK! Ryos and Gurejele are leading figures in New Caledonia’s Kaneka movement, a unique music that blends local polyphonic singing styles and traditional rhythms of the Kanak culture with pop and world beat flavors.

Te Vaka, a New Zealand-based band with members from across Oceania, is creating a pan-Pacific pop music that incorporates elements from a variety of cultures into an appealing fusion. Fellow New Zealander Whirimako Black endeavors to bring Maori music, culture, and language to a broader audience.

Finally, from far-off Rapa Nui, better known as Easter Island, comes Matato’a. Their native language is now spoken by less than 3000 people and is blended here with an upbeat, cross-cultural mix of music.

This enhanced CD features an OK! Ryos music video filmed on the picturesque beaches of New Caledonia, as well as informative liner notes in English, Spanish, and French, striking Lonely Planet photographs and the recipe of a traditional South Pacific dish.

Amazon.com

Bring up the subject of Polynesian music to most Americans and they might mention Hawaiian slide-guitars and ukuleles, the hula or perhaps slack-key finger-picking. But Hawaii is a mere pin-spot within Oceania, a huge area consisting of more than of 25,000 islands that are in turn subdivided into regions known as Melanesia, Polynesia, and Micronesia. As well, there are the related native cultures of Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. Many of the traditions seem to share a passion for melody which is often expressed via exquisite close-harmony singing. The songs on this collection, while contemporary, bear out this reputation for fine vocals. But the selections are otherwise quite varied, ranging from Auckland New Zealand-based Whirimako Black's Sade-like delivery, to Gurejele's sun-drenched, almost South African-sounding vamps, to the glistening, multi-layered pop of Papua New Guinea's O-Shen. The enhanced CD features a video of Co Era So by OK! Ryos. --Christina Roden

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
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4 star
17%
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See all 12 customer reviews
Any CD Putumayo puts out is great.
Marian J. Farris
Rather, the best traditions of authentic island music have fused with contemporary pop and reggae to create some very catchy tunes.
David Stanley
This is one of those albums that just makes you happy.
kaycita

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By E. Laway on March 23, 2005
This is probably one of the best Putumayo compilitions I have come across. The musicians are from differents islands but there seem to be a cohesion that you can sense and that is the beautifully woven melodies in the songs. I like all the artists and their songs, but I think the band Te Vaka is a stand up. The way they incorporated rhythm and melody back up with folksy, soft rock splash with island breeze is such a treat to listen to. I also like Whirimako Black. Wow! she has such a light, jazzy voice, just gorgeous to listen to. I will attempt to hunt down one of her CD's. So folks, if you're a Putumayo fan, this is difinite in your collection.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By traveler on January 9, 2005
This is hands down my favorite Putumayo c.d. Coupled with their "Islands" c.d.this is all the authentic island music you will need. The selections are all excellent, no filler or anything to "out there". In the middle of a midwestern winter; this is just what you need!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By David Stanley on December 21, 2004
This outstanding collection of 11 songs by seven groups is required listening for anyone interested in the South Pacific music of today. These are not recordings of obscure tribal music taped in remote locations by ethnomusicologists. Rather, the best traditions of authentic island music have fused with contemporary pop and reggae to create some very catchy tunes. Four tracks are from the Pacific's most famous band, Te Vaka, and we're introduced to Matato'a from Easter Island, OK! Ryos and Gurejele from Mare Island in New Caledonia, and Telek from Papua New Guinea. The one song by the Maori singer Whirimako Black is almost New Age. All of the songs on this record are sung in the native languages, and Putumayo World Music has provided a 35-page booklet of notes introducing the groups and explaining the lyrics. Te Vaka laments westernization in Tokelau, Whirimako Black celebrates female Maori stone carvers, Gurejele condemns French colonialism, and Matato'a proclaims the mystic power of the Pacific - not what you would have guessed! One of the OK! Ryos selections is a music video you can watch on your computer. I've played South Pacific Islands a dozen times and have no problem giving it five stars.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amaranth on June 12, 2006
This CD has EVERYTHING--a great recipe,a music video AND of course,wonderful music.It's the musical equivalent of Trader Vic's.It's a mai tai of music.

Highlights-

1)Mana Ma'Ohi-A group from Easter Island (Rapa Nui).Yes,there is more to this island than the giant heads that now adorn tiki rooms everywhere.

2)Sei Ma Le Losa-A song in honor of Greenpeace's founder.Very beautiful.

3)Siasi-A joyous love song.If you look in the liner notes,the lead singer is as easy on the eyes as he is on the ears.

4)Co era so-This has a music video.Wonderful.

5)Watolea-A rousing tune.

Drink this music down!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By kaycita on February 8, 2007
Verified Purchase
This is one of those albums that just makes you happy. We have quite a few Putumayo collections and like all of them, but most of them have at least one song we could skip. Not this one. Every single track makes me smile. Enjoy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. TIMMERMAN on April 20, 2005
The South Pacific Islands collection comes from Tokelau, Samoa, New Zealand, Rapa Nui, Easter island, Papua New Guinea and New Caledonia. Here the easy listening contemporary music with a traditional feel moves along at a comfortable speed, conjuring up romantic islands and emerald seas. To help put you in the picture the CD is enhanced with a video from New Caledonian band OK! Ryos featuring dreamy images that make you wish you were on holidays in the tropical sun, not stuck in that damn job! Harmony vocals are a feature, and there's a touch of funk as well. Don't worry if you don't know the artists, they're all professional and engaging.
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