Delta blues and Tuvan throat-singing: Paul Pena and Genghis Blues


23 Responses to “Delta blues and Tuvan throat-singing: Paul Pena and Genghis Blues”

  1. andydub says:

    Paul Pena also studied with Jill Purce, and apparently she was the person he heard on the shortwave broadcast. Here she is introduced by Terence McKenna:

  2. elsmiley says:

    I have pancreatitis. As a devout atheist/existentialist, I would readily kill my worst enemy, but I would not wish this horribly painful malady on him.

    Trip out: When it flares up, about every 4 months or so, I take heroin to deal with the pain, and I’m not a drug user otherwise–at all. I can’t go to hospital any more because they think I’m just trying to get free drugs from them. I have no choice.

  3. Takuan says:

    I’ve heard pot helps.

  4. elsmiley says:

    Thanks for the suggestion. Mokin’ a yoint? No offense, but you don’t realize the intensity. It’s way beyond THC.

  5. backstab says:

    this is an awesome documentary. i suggest anyone interested in music to check it out.

  6. Takuan says:

    Not just music. Pena’s heart and courage shine.

  7. Takuan says:

    the gods be with you then

  8. craig1st says:

    It’s nice to see this added recognition. Paul was a luminary.

  9. scruzia says:

    One of Ondar’s albums is called Back Tuva Future. I wrote a bit about Genghis Blues a few years ago.

  10. hassan-i-sabbah says:

    Thanks.Really great ace podcast!

  11. bunnyman2112 says:

    When Frank Zappa was dying from cancer, he held “soirees” in his studio. One of which featured the Throat Singers jamming with Johnny “Guitar” Watson, and the Chieftans. I saw a couple minutes of it on the A & E Zappa Biography show, but I’d LOVE to hear the whole set!

  12. FmGT says:

    Hey, Pena is absolutely fantastic. I’ve been a fan of his for quite some time. At the moment, my blog is hosting his debut album [out of print]…

    Enjoy this! It’s a masterpiece, easily trumping his other release, New Train.


  13. soubriquet says:

    If you liked Paul Pena….
    You might like the Mongolian band Yat-Kha, led by Albert Kuvezhin.
    I posted a track here:-
    The track is off the album “Re-Covers”.
    Or there’s a great Polish band with throatsingers…. Yerba Mater… You’ll find them here- along with Masala Soundsystem…….
    The Internet has wonderful diversity…..
    I found all these after an interest in Tuva was sparked by Dr Richard Feynman, physicist.

  14. MHotel says:

    The documentary Genghis Blues is awesome… There is an interesting point where it changes from novel to gripping when it really hits Pena that nothing around him is familiar, a hard thing for a blind person to cope with.

    Also, lots of background Feynman goodness.

  15. lukobe says:

    Great doc–loved it when it came out and picked it up on DVD last year.

    Surprised no one’s mentioned that almost everyone reading this has heard at least one Paul Pena song before: “Jet Airliner,” made famous by one Steve Miller…

  16. Kaiser says:

    I had no idea Paul was dead. I’m sitting here utterly shocked.

  17. horsepj says:

    I liked the movie as well as the soundtrack. I second the recommendation of Yat-Kha, I saw them here in Indiana doing the music for the silent film “Storm Over Asia”. The projectionist could not get the movie started for an hour and a half, so they gave us an impromptu concert. I also recommend Hun Huur Tu.

  18. am says:

    Genghis Blues is not just a good documentary. In my opinion, it is one of the five or so greatest documentaries of all time. If you open your heart to it, and let yourself really understand and feel what is happening in it, you will be blown away.

  19. Infinite Decay says:

    I remember being fascinated by Kongar-ol Ondar when he performed on Letterman a few years back. (Here’s a clip of this that I found on YouTube.)

  20. Clifton says:

    Genghis Blues is a amazing film. Incredible heart, incredible people. (Netflix has it, if you don’t want to buy a copy sight unseen.)

  21. hassan-i-sabbah says:

    Thanks BB! thanks to all posters who have given me more insight into Paul Pena,just finished watching the doc – blown away -cultural curiosity is a beautiful human trait,intrinsic in our very nature,more so than fear and suspicion.Truly heart warming.Music can bring us together.
    elsmiley – My heart goes out to you.

  22. raytube says:

    I must take a moment to add in:

    “Senegalese native and North Mississippi transplant Guelel Kumba plays amplified acoustic guitar and sings in Fulani. Able backing comes from guitarist and Junior Kimbrough apprentice Eric Deaton, Kimbrough’s son Kinney (drums), R.L. Burnside’s grandson Cedric (drums), a host of North Mississippi session men, and other guests including Memphis sax-flute journeyman Herman Green (Lionel Hampton, B.B. King, Miles Davis) and activist-poet-jazz historian-promoter-DJ John Sinclair (of MC5 and White Panther fame, and a New Orleans resident since the early 1990s)…”

  23. soubriquet says:

    Further to my earlier comments ande links, I forgot this one, I posted Paul Pena/Kongar-ol Ondar, Kargyraa Moan, Here:-


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