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Weaving My Ancestors' Voices

Sheila Chandra

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Album Review

Although Chandra had been recording for over a decade when Weaving My Ancestors' Voices was released, this may be the album where she truly found her creative voice. Most vestiges of the pop/dance/rock rhythms of Monsoon, and some of her early albums, are absent. Chandra is now a virtuoso of the voice, offering almost avant-garde presentations of vocal gymnastics on "Speaking in Tongues." More often, though, she presents explorations of various musical cultures: India, of course, but also Irish folk, a Spanish lullaby, and Islamic singing. The spiritual quality of the material is enhanced by the drone-like textures of much of the music, devised by Chandra and her writing/production partner, Steve Coe.

Biography

Born: 14 March 1965 in Waterloo, London, England

Genre: World

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

One of the most unusual and successful singers of the '80s and '90s that has attempted to fuse the music of non-Western cultures with Western pop, Sheila Chandra began recording as a teenager in Monsoon. Of Indian ancestry but born and raised in Britain, Chandra took lead vocals in the band, which pursued a sort of new wave-tinged raga rock along the lines of George Harrison's explorations on Beatles tracks like "Love You To." The combination yielded an album and an unexpected British hit single,...
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Weaving My Ancestors' Voices, Sheila Chandra
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