The Latin rock band Del Castillo started in the winter of 2000 in Austin, TX, as a family CD project for singer/guitarists and brothers Mark del Castillo and Rick del Castillo, who eventually added Alex Ruiz on lead vocals, guitar, and harmonica; Albert Besteiro on bass; and Mike Zeoli on drums. That CD turned out to be Del Castillo's debut release, Brothers of the Castle, in 2001. Vida followed in 2002, and Brotherhood (with special guest Willie Nelson) in 2006. The group's self-titled fourth album appeared in April 2009. Del Castillo also has contributed to several films directed by Robert Rodriguez, including Spy Kids 3D, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Sin City, and Grindhouse. Performing with Rodriguez under the name Chingon, they recorded a version of the traditional Mexican song "Malaguena Salerosa" used in the Quentin Tarantino film Kill Bill Vol. II.
One of the main protagonists of the Italian dance music scene, Planet Funk emerged in 1999 as the fusion of two successful club music outfits, Souled Out (formed by Neapolitan producers Alessandro Sommella, Domenico "GG" Canu, and Sergio Della Monica) and Kamasutra (Florence's keyboard player Marco Baroni and DJ Alex Neri). The name Planet Funk was taken from an old Alex Neri track. English vocalists Auli Kokko and Dan Black were asked to join, and the ensemble mixed the track "Chase the Sun" for the summer of 2000. The song became an unexpected hit in Ibiza, prompting Verve's discoverer David Boyd to sign the group with Virgin Records. The first album, 2002's Non Zero Sumness, went gold and was also crowned at the Italian Music Awards. A remixed version Non Zero Sumness Plus One appeared toward the end of the year, followed by The Illogical Consequence in 2005 and Static in 2006. Other vocalists featured in the albums include Raiss, Sally Doherty, John Graham, and Luke Allen. Planet Funk have been invited to collaborate with Simple Minds, and to remix tracks by New Order and Faithless, among others.
The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is a cultural ambassador for Israel, and is regarded as one of the best orchestras in the world. Recorded in the Mann Auditorium, Tel Aviv in March 2010, this concert sees the Israel Philharmonic conducted in this all-Beethoven programme by the eminent conductor and violinist Itzhak Perlman. After the Egmont Overture, Perlman and the orchestra are joined by the Perlman/Schmidt/Bailey Trio for the beautiful ‘Triple’ Concerto. The programme concludes with the rousing and evocative ‘Pastoral’ Symphony.