Now, for the first time ever, music fans across the country can experience, first hand, the joyous sounds created by some of the most diverse artists to have performed at Central Park SummerStage in New York City during its 19 year history.
The album marks the very first mixtape of live SummerStage recordings produced by CityParks Foundation. Twenty years of joining top artists and audiences has earned SummerStage an international reputation. There’s poetry in that, for a signature aspect of the series is a border-defying, global sensibility. Reggae from Jamaica. Soukous and mbaqanga from Africa. Bossa-nova, samba and rap from Brazil. French chansons, Italian operettas, British soliloquisms. In its history, SummerStage has presented a total of 1,513 artist performances at 694 events, to more than 2.5 million people in Central Park, which had previously only hosted classical music, opera, and Shakespeare.
ReviewsThe crown jewel of the album is Bemba Colora, taken from the great, late Celia Cruz' final performance, in which the Queen of Salsa, aware of the illness that would later claim her life, freestyles into the song: As I prepare to leave, please God remember my name/and if I die, hell, just bury me here in Central Park... Also worth the price are Ojos de Brujo's Tanguillo de Maria and Susana Baca's poignant dedication of her Molino Molero to the end of all borders. - Ernest Barteldes