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Wu Man

Wu Man (Chinese: 吴蛮; pinyin: Wú Mán; born 1963 in Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China) is a Chinese pipa and ruan player and composer. She is an exponent of the Pudong School of pipa playing. She studied at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, where her instructors included Lin Shicheng, Kuang Yuzhong, Chen Zemin, and Liu Dehai. She became the first recipient of a master's degree in pipa and won the first prize in the 1989 National Music Performance Competition.

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Emmanuel Jal

Emmanuel Jal (born c. 1980) is a Sudanese musician and former child soldier. Born in the village of Tonj in Southern Sudan, he was a little boy when the civil war broke out. Emmanuel’s father joined the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and when he was about seven years old his mother died. Emmanuel then decided to join the thousands of children travelling to Ethiopia who had been told that they could be educated there.

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Richard Bona

Born in 1967 in the village of Minta in East Cameroon, Bona grew up in a home filled with music. He began to perform in public at the age of five, singing in the village church with his mother and four sisters. His earliest instruments were wooden flutes and hand percussion. Eventually he constructed his own 12-string acoustic guitar. After moving to the bigger city of Douala, Richard began playing gigs at the age of 11 on a rented electric guitar. A major turning point in his life happened in 1980 when a Frenchman came to his town and established a jazz club in a local hotel.

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Juzzie Smith

Juzzie Started playing the harmonica at 13. By 23 he had won the coveted Golden Harmonica at the Tamworth Country Music Festival, and the Byron Bay Blues Blowout twice. He has in the course of his musical journey embraced and mastered a range of instruments, and absorbed influence from some diverse musical styles. Juzzie has played in a lot of bands, some fantastic and some forgettable, and performed with some of Australia's best musicians, including John Butler, Damon Davies, Jodi Martin and Jeff Lang.

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Ana Moura

Portuguese vocalist Ana Moura, whose soulful and riveting interpretation of her land's captivating fado style has made her a star in Europe. Ana Moura has become a leading exponent of this poetic, deeply expressive idiom which personifies the Portuguese psyche as it explores such universal themes as lost love, separation, and longing. As Ana explains, "It's very special because it's all about emotions and feelings. It needs no translation."

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Kodo

<a href="http://www.last.fm/music/%E9%BC%93%E7%AB%A5" class="bbcode_artist">鼓童</a> (Kodō) is one of the elite taiko drumming groups today. Based in Sado Island, Japan, they have been a major force in the post-World War II revitalization of taiko drumming, both in Japan and abroad. They regularly tour Japan and the United States. Although the main focus of the performance is taiko drumming, other traditional Japanese musical instruments such as fue and shamisen make an appearance on stage as do traditional dance and vocal performance.

Faiz Ali Faiz

Faiz Ali Faiz (born 1962 in Sharaqpur, Pakistan) is one of the main singers of qawwali, a devotional musical expression of the Sufis, a mystical offshoot of Islam. Faiz Ali Faiz comes from a family of qawwals from seven generations in Pakistan. He started his professional career in 1978, at age 16, creating at the same time his own qawwali ensemble. Though Faiz is from Lahore, he practices the doaba style from eastern Pakistan. He stated in recent interviews he has been influenced by Sham-Chaurasi, a famous Khayal singing school where Ustad Salamat Ali Khan belongs to.

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Dead Can Dance

Dead Can Dance is a band formed in Melbourne, Australia in 1981 by Brendan Perry (baritone) together with Simon Monroe and Paul Erikson later to be joined by Lisa Gerrard (contralto). They disbanded in 1998, and temporarily reunited to do a highly successful world tour in 2005 with a view to recording another studio album together. In order to concentrate on their solo careers and due to ongoing personal differences between Perry and Gerrard, the project was, however, put on hiatus.

Gurrumul

A former member of Australian band Yothu Yindi, Gurrumul was born blind and sings mostly in his traditional language. Gurrumul plays the guitar upside down because there were no left handed guitars in the communities he grew up in. Gurrumul's story will inspire many. But his voice is what will cut through and if it lands on enough ears, his debut album 'Gurrumul' available on Skinnyfish Music could prove to be a landmark Australian release.

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Nitin Sawhney

Nitin Sawhney (raised in Rochester, Kent, England) is a london-based composer and dj of various styles of music, including jazz, drum and bass, hip-hop, flamenco and modern orchestral compositions. His major works include Beyond Skin, Prophesy, Human, and Philtre. He is considered one of the pioneers of what is known as the Asian Underground music scene, defining a music genre that mixes south-asian musical influences with western electronica and breakbeat style. He does however dislike the tag of "world" music, describing it as musical apartheid.

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