Michael Franti releases new album - Yell Fire!

Yell_fireMichael Franti released his latest album, Yell Fire!, this week.  The album is made up of music inspired by his 2004 trip to Baghdad, Israel and Palestine to tour the region and visit the troops, his guitar slung over his shoulder the entire way.  He made a film about the experience entitled I Know I'm Not Alone, which he screened at small theatres and yoga studios in New York and San Francisco. Having seen the film and Franti discuss it, I expected big things from this album and was not disappointed.

Michael Franti is one of the most important musicians today.  The fact that he has yet to be discovered by the mainstream only adds to his cache, in my opinion.  His music is soulful and sweet.  The arrangements and production are creative and fun - a blend of hip hop, reggae and funk, making Franti's sound completely unique.  What really grips you about this album though is the inspiration that he brings to his music from these conflict-ridden regions.  Franti is a spiritual, practicing yogi (I saw him perform in a NYC yoga studio) and politically involved.  All of this comes through in his songs, nearly all of which have some element of political undertone, cultural message or spiritual plea.  The entire album grabs you by the heart and raises you up a couple steps. I've uploaded three tracks from the album here.  Enjoy!!  Download yell_fire_03_i_know_im_not_alone.mp3 Download yell_fire_07_one_step_closer_to_you.mp3 Download yell_fire_06_hello_bonjour.mp3

By Josh Guttman

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