The latest profile in The KCSBeat, the Santa Barbara Independent‘s column on what is going on, what has gone on, and what will go on at KCSB, covers Desafinado, Emilia Dellemonico and James Mrohs’. The show offers a Sunday-evening trip way south of the border to the land of bossa nova, tropicalia, samba, and beyond:
Sitting in the studio, I listened in on numerous exchanges between the hosts about how best to move from one type or era of Brazilian music to another, the career details of stars like Tom Zé and Caetano Veloso, which tracks belong under which precise category or era heading, and how to most correctly pronounce “João Gilberto.” Such is their enthusiasm not just for Brazilian music, but for the webs of knowledge binding Brazilian music together, that they once considered devoting 20 solid minutes each show to discussion of, as Mrohs put it, “the ramifications of bossa nova. How the government was once against it. How these aren’t just musical movements, but cultural and political ones.”
“Are you guys grad students studying Brazil?” asked one caller. Neither of them are — Mrohs is an environmental studies student at UCSB and Dellemonico is a recent graduate in psychology, cultural anthropology, and education with plans to teach English in Brazil — but they’re both deeply fascinated by the country. The learning that comes from interest this strong makes possible the kind of radio you wouldn’t hear anywhere else. Dellemonico told me about the time they read an Amazonian folktale live on the air, complete with Amazonian tribal music and the ambient sounds of the rainforest.
Find it all out here.