Joachim Cooder's Mbira Calms From The First Note : World Cafe : World Cafe Words and Music from WXPN Joachim Cooder talks on how the instrument informs his new album, Over That Road I'm Bound: The Songs of Uncle Dave Macon, and performs live with his father, Ry Cooder.
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Joachim Cooder's Mbira Calms From The First Note

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Joachim Cooder's Mbira Calms From The First Note

Joachim Cooder's Mbira Calms From The First Note

Joachim Cooder's Mbira Calms From The First Note

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Joachim Cooder Abby Ross/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Abby Ross/Courtesy of the artist

Joachim Cooder

Abby Ross/Courtesy of the artist

Set List

  • "When The Train Comes Along"
  • "Heartaching Blues"
  • "Morning Blues"

Could you use a bit of Zen in your life? Like all of us? What if I told you there is an instrument that will calm you down from its first note. That is the effect that Joachim Cooder's mbira, a typeof "thumb piano," provides.

For this session, we dig into the instrument's African history and how it informs this exceptional album, Over That Road I'm Bound: The Songs of Uncle Dave Macon. (Macon, by the way, was the very first star from Nashville's venerated Grand Ole Opry in the late 1920s.) Find out how Joachim first got turned on to Macon's music, how it resonated with his young daughter and how this album grew from conception to completion.

You'll hear some home recordings of the songs, too, as done by Joachim, with dad, Ry Cooder in tow.

Episode Playlist