When Jenny and Jenna, two Black singers regularly posting Kpop covers on YouTube, found that they were often confused for each other, they decided to band together and form CoCo Avenue, currently the world's first all-Black Kpop group. Other Black Kpop performers include RaNia's Alex, Insooni, Lee Michelle, and Tasha a.k.a. Yoon Mi Rae.
The 2015 Eurovision Song Contest winner has now been crowned (previously), but the real stars of the contest were the fabulous and entertaining International Sign interpreters. [more inside]
Dancehall in Japan. A short mini documentary from the Scene Unseen project at #ListenForYourself. [more inside]
Sound Opinions, the ever-excellent radio show / podcast based out of Chicago, have embarked on a 'world tour'. With the aid of a local musician or journalist, each episode covers the history of modern music in a certain country. They look at what's new and exciting in both the mainstream and underground as well as what foreign music is cracking the market. So far the tour has touched down in Mexico, Japan and Sweden, and Greg & Jim are encouraging feedback on where they should go next. [more inside]
"Euphoria", which won the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest (previously), is a #1 in several countries, including Ireland, Austria, and Switzerland Of course, it's not the only song charting internationally that you might never hear on US radio. It should come as no surprise that one can readily find international hits online. For instance - Sweden, #4: Panetoz - Dansa Pausa Sweden, #9: Mange Makers - Drick Den This doesn't purport to be an exhaustive list, but rather a jumping-off point. [more inside]
Raw Music International is a prospective television series about music from around the world that would usually escape the attention of folk not living in the middle of it. The first episode has already been shot in Kenya, and the folk behind it are currently trying to get it funded. But until it gets broadcast, we can read their accounts of going out and recording the hip-hop, reggae and more trad-ish music of Kisumu. If you're interested in THE MUSIC AND NOTHING BUT THE MUSIC, head over to their Soundcloud page.
All you need is love - from 156 countries, all at the same time. Join in the chorus; each video leads to a 5-cent donation from Starbucks to the RED Global Fund for AIDS in Africa.
Get your international pop tune fix. Slate has an article on the funky pop and rock gems available from the Japanese iTunes Store. From Straightener to NICO Touches the Walls, the Japanglophonic music scene is available to the whole world in the standard 30-second snippets, but the article hints at ways to buy songs for those located in other places. If you just want a crack at the weekly free downloads, you can take a crack at workaround and score yourself an account on any one of the 22 iTunes Stores. (via Macslash)
rockpaperscissors is a nifty little place where you can scope out music from all over. The archive profiles all sorts of artists and provides free full-length samples to help you decide how to get your groove on.