By Jacob Katel
By Laurie Charles
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Abel Folgar
By Kat Bein
By Jacob Katel
The wayfaring Fanshawe illustrates his point with a story of a boat trip to the northern Cook Islands, where he slept on a trunk filled with videos. "It was the first time videos had reached the island of Pukapuka," he says. "I had this experience all over the Pacific. Once the islanders started watching movies, they didn't want to practice their traditional dances."
Fanshawe has done his part to preserve some of the world's endangered music by making field recordings in India, Southeast Asia, and West Africa, keeping them in his personal archive in England. His most extensive project has been the ten years spent scouring the South Pacific from Papua New Guinea to the Republic of Yap, recording between 4000 and 5000 hours of music.
But as time goes on and its popularity continues to grow, he finds himself drawn back to African Sanctus. The 1974 album version has become one of the Philips label's all-time best-selling classical records, and the piece has been performed over 1000 times to date.
"When I first started doing performances they were sporadic. Now there's usually a performance, sometimes more, every week. It's extraordinary," he marvels. "This is because there's much more understanding and sympathy for world music, and people are much more willing to embrace other cultures and realize that there's not just white music."