Friday, March 17, 2006

Film His Girl Friday (Howard Hawks, 1940); Bands Jaafar Music and Toubab Krewe

I saw His Girl Friday tonight at the North Carolina Museum of Art's Winter 2006 Film Series. What a fun and fast-paced film with dialogue at times flying too fast to catch all of it! It was originally a play named The Front Page featuring I believe two lead male actors, instead of one female and one male, as in the film. From the film series website:

The Front Page, by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur, a hard-boiled comedy about Chicago cops, corruption and the newspaper business, gets a gender reversal overhaul, outing the workplace romance of Walter Burns and Hildy Johnson. ... Never released on home video—rare print!

My friend Troy who fronts the band Jaafar Music (which just won for the second year running an award from the local Independent newspaper as best local band playing international music) was playing in downtown Raleigh's Lincoln Theatre. After the film, I caught about half of Jaafar Music's 1-hour set - talented and intricate music, always a pleasure to see their brand of fusion jazz with Middle Eastern and some Indian influence.

I stayed on to see Toubab Krewe, and they turned out to be great! This Asheville, NC-based band influenced by West African music has been together about a year and already have attracted the attention of several music festivals they've played at (they're getting ready to leave for Colorado, California, and other places in the West) and several newspapers even including the New York Times. The five musicians made many extended visits to Africa, Mali in particular, and played fabulous music, with tremendous percussion and very interesting stringed instruments, including one instrument that looked a little like a sitar. What a fun evening!


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