Holly Near

Sing to Me the Dream: Un Canto Solidario

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This live album is drawn from Holly Near's spring 1984 tour with exiled Chilean folk group Inti-Illimani. The eight male Chileans play a variety of acoustic string and wind instruments and sing in a stirring style that is sometimes reminiscent of the Gipsy Kings. Near, singing in English and Spanish, is equally stirring, whether employing her more strident or more delicate approaches. A genuine collaboration, the album effectively showcases both performers. For the 2007 reissue by Calico Tracks Music, the first time the album appeared on CD, Near went back to the original tapes to expand the set. First, she re-sequenced and lengthened the 1984 show, adding a version of her anti-interventionist song "Watch Out" as well as the feminist-themed "She" and a medley of "Hay una Mujer Desaparecida," "Voices," and "It Could've Been Me." At the end, she appended a 2000 studio recording of "Hay una Mujer Desaparecida" that appeared previously on her compilation Simply Love: The Women's Music Collection, plus two duet performances with Mercedes Sosa from the 1990 live album Singer in the Storm, Sting's "They Dance Alone" and "Todavia Cantamos." The new material gave the collection more of a political focus, appropriate given her liner note statement, "In 1984, I invited Inti-Illimani to tour with me in the U.S. to bring attention to the crisis in Chile under the Pinochet dictatorship."

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