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Harry Belafonte

Turn the World Around

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Four years after his last studio effort, the somnambulistic Play Me, Harry Belafonte returned with this album which showed the veteran artist returning to his strength: unique interpretations of songs from many cultures. It is an absolute triumph and one of the finest albums of his career. Styles impeccably presented include calypso from Trinidad, reggae from Jamaica, guaguanco from Cuba, salsa from Puerto Rico, huapango from Mexico, highlife from Ghana, and gospel from America. Belafonte's ensemble of musicians and singers hailed from seven different countries, a veritable United Nations of talent. Belafonte is joined by the delightful Falumi Prince, a featured partner Belafonte's concert act during this period. The two revive the playful duet "(There's A) Hole in the Bucket," and which Belafonte sang with Odetta in earlier years. There's a new version of the calypso "Goin' Down Jordan," and also included are the exuberant crowd-pleasers "Marching to the Fair" and the title track. Belafonte is listed as the producer of the album, possibly a reason for its superior quality. The only question one would have about this album is: why was it never issued in the U.S.?