The ability of music to travel under bombs and across barriers joins two great voices from the Arab and Latin American worlds. Join us for a beautiful and rare concert with Lebanon’s May Nasr and Puerto Rico’s Lourdes Pérez as we celebrate the release of their full length Spanish/Arabic duet album, Written in Water.
May Nasr and Lourdes Pérez are considered musical icons and voices for peace in different worlds, oceans apart: May, from Lebanon, Lourdes, from Puerto Rico. It was the sound of one song during the Israeli bombing of Lebanon in 2006 that sparked their unlikely connection.
From Moca, Puerto Rico, musician, poet and composer Lourdes Pérez is known for her uniquely rich contralto voice and her ability to craft emotionally charged, honor songs to people, places, history and ideals. She has performed internationally for 25 years, documenting and paying soulful homenaje to the passion and hope at the common heart of human struggle. Lourdes has created scores for theater, dance, and film and has released 9 albums. Her history with raúlrsalinas and Resistencia began in the early 90’s and extends from Seattle to Vieques to Chiapas to East Austin to a small shack where they recorded together a revolutionary “En Mi Viejo San Juan in the rain.” This will be her first performance at Resistencia since raúl’s passing. In 2006, she was among the first five musicians to be awarded a United States Artists unrestricted fellowship for music. Lourdes is the co-author and songwriter of the oral history/song book and CD, Dulce Vigilante: Remembranzas de la Región Oeste de Puerto Rico (Chee Wee House, 2015).
”With her beautiful voice of thick smoke and clear honey, Lourdes Pérez leaves deep footprints that we will remember forever.” – Gloria Anzaldúa
Based in Beirut, “the great voice from Lebanon” May Nasr has inspired a global following with her plaintive voice and acoustic guitar. A voice for freedom, justice, equality, humanity and love, May often focuses on the beauty of the Lebanese people in her music, using songs of peace, love and resilience to inspire positive change. She has been influenced by the songs of the great Fairouz, Ahmad Kaabour, Marcel Khalife and Julia Boutros. In her early singing career, May was trained by the great Zaki Nassif as well as Badia Sabra Haddad, former voice teacher of Fairouz. May has performed to ecstatic audiences throughout the Middle East and the world. Her first CD, Lil Ghaly, was released in November 2008. “May’s singing comes from the heart and has the ability to go straight to the heart.”
– Fareed Abou El Kheir
The new album features songs by Lourdes translated to Arabic and songs by May translated to Spanish and includes Te Llamo/Ounadikum with special guest, beloved songwriter Ahmad Kaboor, and a Spanish/Arabic version of Joan Manuel Serrat’s Mediterraneo. Listen: http://lourdesperez.com/
Sponsored by Red Salmon Arts
This project is supported in part by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department. Visit Austin at NowPlayingAustin.com.