Well, I'm not doing much better with the illness I am afflicted with, however, I had to come off the DL for this.
I heard news this weekend that, certainly, put a damper in, if any, holiday spirit hovering around.
That being that the wonderful, and talented, Cape Verdean singer, Cesaria Evoria passed away, at the not-terribly-old-age of 70.
Listening to her was such a pleasure, for she carried you off into a world, flooded and filled, with the most beautiful sounds, a world you may not know existed, just floating along, listening to her, lost in the beauty, thinking, hoping, it would never end.
I was fortunate to see her perform, twice, back in the mid and late 1990's, and it was awesome.
Coming out of those shows was like having seen something outside your own understanding, something miraculously divine and good, a refreshing of your soul.
From Jon Pareles at the NYT;
Ms. Évora’s music was in a style called morna, which is sung in taverns on the Cape Verde islands: slow, pensive ballads with an underlying lilt, suffused with sodade, the Cape Verdean creole term for a nostalgic longing that pervades music across Portugal (where the word is saudade) and its former empire.
Ms. Évora sang about love, sorrow and history, including slavery, in a husky, dignified, unhurried contralto that brought warmth and gravity to songs by Cape Verde’s leading poets. She also sang in her country’s more upbeat styles, coladeira and funaná, but her serenely sorrowful mornas were her legacy.
She always performed barefoot, a gesture of solidarity with poor women. A concert review in The New York Times described her as “a Yoda of melancholy” onstage.
And Barry Hatton at SF Chronicle-AP
Her singing style brought comparisons to American jazz singer Billie Holiday. "She belongs to the aristocracy of bar singers," French newspaper Le Monde said in 1991, adding that Ms. Evora had "a voice to melt the soul."
Ms. Evora's international fame came late in life. Her 1988 album "La Diva Aux Pieds Nus" ("Barefoot Diva"), recorded in France where she first found popularity, launched her international career.
Her 1995 album "Cesaria" was released in more than a dozen countries and brought her first Grammy nomination, leading to a tour of major concert halls around the world and album sales in the millions.
She won a 2003 Grammy in the World Music category for her album "Voz D'Amor."
Xeni Jardin, over on Boing Boing, also has a nice tribute to check out.
As does the BBC - Cesaria Evora, the voice that put Cape Verde on the map
So long Cesaria Evora ...
Try not to make the angels cry, with your so, so sweat voice ....
Cesaria Evora - Sodade (HD,16:9)
Cesaria Evora - Besame Mucho
Cesaria Evora - Carnaval De Sao Vicente ( Live In Paris )