Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Savina Yannatou: Terra Nostra

Here’s what I know about Savina Yannatou: she was born in Greece in 1959 and has been singing professionally since age 20. In 1994, she teamed with arranger-guitarist (and gifted oud and tamboura player) Yannis Alexandris to form the band Primavera en Salonico. Their ensemble has since been described as “rope dancers [who] explore the territory of free improvisation.” On Terra Nostra (ECM), recorded live in Athens in November 2001, Yannatou and her globally conscious confreres set out on an ambitious journey, celebrating the folk-jazz traditions of Greece, Bulgaria, Scotland, Sardinia, Lebanon, Asia Minor, Spain, France and the Caribbean. It is impossible to accurately describe the dense magnificence, the robust nobility, of Terra Nostra’s multinational palette. Wrap yourself in the warm fragility of “A Fairy’s Love Song,” wonder at the dizzying cacophony of “Ballo Sardo,” bask in the whispered glory of “Adieu Paure Carnavas.” Do so and you will have barely scratched the surface of this stellar world tour.

Originally Published