Keeping a band together in NYC is TOUGH. I know because I've done it -- or tried to do it -- myself. So I have to hand it to Scott Kettner for sheer tenacity, regarding his pet project "Nation Beat." You may remember Scott as one of my very first interviews for this blog, about his Forro Brass Band. He made me promise back then to blog something about Nation Beat, so I started collecting and shooting footage, and letting the story develop.
Scott does raise an interesting issue, regarding "world music." In the fledgling days of the term, it was assumed that Cajun, Zydeco, Tex-Mex, Bluegrass, etc. were all part of world music. (Just check out the landmark "Rough Guide to World Music" published in 1994.) Since then, the term has expanded to include all kinds of hybrids. So in my opinion it's a kind of daft political correctness to exclude the Country Music influences in the Nation Beat repertoire...after all they aren't getting up there and doing an all-Country set; it's American Country filtered through Brazilian Country. And anyway, our Country Music derives from our Scots-Irish heritage, does it not? Or does that not qualify as world music to some folks any more?