Argentine folklore composer, pianist and director Ariel Ramírez died last night after a long illness. Those who know of him abroad probably do so for his Misa Criolla. This is just the (deservedly famous) tip of a giant iceberg of Argentine music, as he was teacher to many, collaborator to a lot more, cataloguer and promoter of traditional folk music and dances, and defender of local composers rights since his early years of fame. [more inside]
On July 12, 2008, Luis Ramirez was beaten to death in the town of Shenandoah, PA by three white kids on the local high school football team. A few months later, they were acquitted by an all-white jury of the most serious charges, receiving only a conviction on simple assault charges. Yesterday, police chief Matthew Nestor and three police officers were charged by the FBI with orchestrating a cover-up, harassing witnesses, and extortion unrelated to this case. Two of the young men have been charged with Federal hate crimes.