Bringing The World Home To You

© 2021 WUNC North Carolina Public Radio
120 Friday Center Dr
Chapel Hill, NC 27517
919.445.9150 | 800.962.9862
91.5 Chapel Hill 88.9 Manteo 90.9 Rocky Mount 91.1 Welcome 91.9 Fayetteville 90.5 Buxton
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Isata Kanneh-Mason, 'Deep River'

"Deep River," the beloved spiritual, gets heard in strikingly diverse settings – from a swing version recorded by Tommy Dorsey in 1941 to an operatic performance at the memorial of Ruth Bader Ginsberg last year. For this new recording by the rising young British pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason, the backdrop is Sierra Leone. That's where her mother is from, as was the father of the mixed race composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, who published this arrangement in 1905. Kanneh-Mason says she feels a familial connection to the music. You can hear the water lapping at river's edge in the gently rolled opening chords. In exploring her musical roots, as it were, Kanneh-Mason offers the arc of Coleridge-Taylor's cinematic drama while tapping into the song's inherent melancholy and hope for a brighter tomorrow.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

More Stories