Jay Sand teaching an All Around This World class

All Around This World is a unique, interactive global music and world cultures program for children 0-9 years old that encourages children and their families to explore the world by enjoying global music, rhythms and movement. Jay Sand, guitarist and children’s music teacher, world traveler and dad of three girls developed All Around This World with his girls as a way to introduce them to the countries he’s already visited and the many more he plans to visit with them. Through CDs, concerts and workshops, dynamic online classes, engaging homeschool and classroom lessons, “musical maps” and participatory parent-child music-making Jay hopes to make the world a bit smaller one song at a time.

All Around This World is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. Contributions for the charitable purposes of All Around This World must be made payable to “Fractured Atlas” only and are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. Donate here.

How to sing with Jay each week in your home or classroom Support All Around This World on Patreon Enjoy interactive All Around This World lessons in your home or classroom


ALL AROUND THIS WORLD NEWS

We’re All About Afghanistan

All Around This World South and Central Asia Map featuring Afghanistan

This week in our online class we’re going to Afghanistan, where our goal is not to ignore the politics of this defiant, ever-independent nation, but instead to choose a different place to focus. This week we’ll celebrate the music, dance and other cultural riches of this historically confounding place, a land that has consistently eluded the clutches of even the most powerful would-be colonizers and to remain opaque, but its own.

From Lahore With Love — the Sachal Jazz Ensemble

We end our week of Pakistani exploration with the Sachal Ensemble, a Pakistani musical sensation that embodies the hope of this complex South Asian nation. the 2016 documentary The Sachal Ensemble — Song of Lahore tells the tale of how the band overcame conservative religious oppression as it achieved international success, integrating traditional Pakistani music with the best of global jazz. Good news from Pakistan? Yes!

Next week, another place where we look to culture to find good news: Afghanistan.

Basant Kite Festival

Every spring in the Pakistani city of Lahore, thousands and thousands and thousands of revelers celebrate a holiday by flying kites. Basant — also known throughout South Asia as, among other things, Vasant Panchami, is a Hindu springtime festival of knowledge, renewal and joy. Whether during basant your family celebrates Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of learning and the arts, or Kama, the Hindu god of love, if you find yourself in Lahore make sure you bring your kite and embrace the spring as it soars. 

Playing Kabaddi across a thousand miles


Yesterday we learned about Kabaddi, a sport that’s extraordinarily popular in South Asia but is less-than-familiar to most of our kids in the West. This week in our online class we’re going to play it, at least in conceptual terms, across the video wires. If I pretend to be the raider and you pretend to be the defenders, we may not be able to do all the fancy tackling real kabaddi players get to do, but at least we’ll be able to learn the basics of the sport. And, the most fun — we can all hold our breath and say, “KABADDI!”

Hold Your Breath and Scream KABADDI

Kabaddi is now our favorite sport. Popular in Pakistan, India, and all around South Asia, this sport combines all the best elements of chasing, tagging, wrestling and holding your breath while you repeat a word that essentially means, in Tamil, “to hold hands.” This video will introduce you to the sport and to some of its basic rules. This video will show you how it’s done.

Basic Bhangra

Bhangra dancing is pure joy. The exuberant form of folk music and accompanying acrobatic dance is electric blend of old and new. Based on traditional folk songs of Punjab, a region that straddles the Pakistani/Indian border, bhangra became an international phenomenon when South Asian immigrants in the United Kingdom infused it with Western musics like electronica and pop. Watch this video, or, heck, any bhangra video worth its salt, and if you’re not up out of your seat and dancing…well, maybe you’re not worth your salt.

 

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan is “Lost in His Work”

PakistaniMusic.com calls revered Qawwali music icon Khan “the Bob Marley of Pakistan” and “the Elvis of the East.” He became internationally known in the ’80s and ’90s through his compilations with Peter Gabriel and his contributions to the film soundtracks of “Last Temptation of Christ,” “Dead Man Walking,” “Natural Born Killers” and “Jackass: The Movie.”  (Kidding about that last one.  Just want to see if you’re  paying attention.)  See a rocking YouTube video of Khan performing the Pakistani Sufi classic “Mustt Mustt (Lost in His Work).”

Pakistan

All Around This World South Asia map featuring Pakistan

This week’s online class takes us to infinitely-complex South Asian nation of Pakistan, a nation whose many electrifying genres of music tell the tale of the country’s geographic location at a crossroads between South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East. This week we’ll enjoy Pakistani songs in Pashto, Farsi, Urdu and Punjabi, music that just as effortlessly sends us a thousand years into the Sufi past as it keeps us in tune with the global rock sounds of today.

All Around This World: South and Central Asia will feature 18 songs from India

The All Around This World: South and Central Asia CD has been a long long long time in coming. We finished recording the tracks many moons ago, mixed a few fewer moons but still several moons ago, and still haven’t mastered…but there is forward motion, and tangible hope. The CD will come out, and it will be a double CD set featuring 17 songs from India and almost as many from other parts of the region. It going to be GREAT. With tabla virtuoso Samir Chatterjee as producer, how could it not be?

Can You Catch the Stars?

“Chukke Hakki” is an Indian song, originally in the language Kannada, about reaching up high high high and catching the stars. I first heard “Chukke Hakki” on one of the magnificent collections of children’s songs by French-Canadian ethnomusicologist Franis Corpateaux, Les Chants des Enfants du monde Vol. 2: South India, Childrens songs from Southern India. Since then I’ve shared the song with so many kids, in my music classes, in curriculum packs I make available to schools and, in this very video, at the EdVenture Children’s Museum in Columbia, South Carolina, with support from the singing Sands.