Start the Year Off Right with these Festivals

Happy New Year! It already seems like 2010 is all about bridging cultures through music. If you’re in the Big Apple this week, you can attend three festivals that aim to make the world just a little bit smaller by gathering acts from around the globe in our own backyard. I’ll have interviews for you later in the week so in the mean time, mark your calendars:

On Friday at 7 p.m., Here Comes Trouble features surf rockers The Cuban Cowboys mixing Montuno rhythms with post-punk angst; Chicha Libre doing Andean cumbia by way of the Amazon; socially-conscious Mexican band Pistolera spreading the word about our rights, war and racism; and Rana Santacruz entertaining with South of the Border bluegrass. Also on the bill are Slavic Soul Party and Pierre de Gaillande.

Then on Saturday at 7:30 p.m., the Mondo Mundo Festival invades with an international line-up that includes Ocote Soul Sounds, an afro beat collabo between Antibalas’ Martín Perna and Grupo Fantasma’s Adrian Quesada. West Africa’s Burkina Electric, Brooklyn’s Toshi Reagon and Lebanon’s Abaji also perform.

And if you still want more, globalFEST rounds out the weekend with an impressive line-up on Sunday at 7 p.m.: Argentine crooner Federico Aubele brings the love while La Cumbiamba eNeYé transport listeners to Colombia’s Afro-Pacific coast with their folk rhythms that date back to the slaves. You’ll get a chance to dance when La Excelencia hit the stage with their contagious salsa dura. Also on board are Celtic voacalist Cara Dillon and Siberian shaman rocker Namgar.