So funny story. I was writing this long-ass thing and using a remote connection to my mac back home to look at what-all I have in my iTunes and it killed my keyboard and I had to restart. So that was pretty lame. It started with the pre-amble that I'm drunk, but I'm marginally less drunk now, but still drunk. ANYWAY
So I agree with you in that "world" music is awesome and also with David Byrne in that "world" music is a marginalizing name that basically says "eat your vegetables this shit is culture." It's worth pointing out that in my catalogue, "world" music has already been winnowed from "4AD" (anything like Dead Can Dance or its ilk, 4 days worth), "6 Degrees" (basically, anything world-ey but also pop-ey, 18 days worth), "enigma-like" (self-evident, 10 days worth), anything classical, anything renaissance. It also precludes anything "folk" (which I tend to hate).
So "world," then, in my universe, is pretty much traditional music of non-western tradition. And I hate to say it, but when you break it down that way, it comes down to two anthologies:
1) Music of Islam. 17 not-fucking-around discs of the traditional instrumentation and vocalizations of everything Donald Trump loves to hate.
(note that really, most people would slap Muslimgauze in here too because it's mostly kind of remixed traditional, but all my Muslimgauze is under "industrial" so that doesn't count either)
2) Shanka Ragamala, which I would not have known about had I not bought it at a Ravi Shankar concert (and got it signed, bitchez). This is a 3-disc set of all of Ravi Shankar's disciples playing his shit and it's tits. Disc 1 is sitar, Disc 2 is other instruments, Disc 3 is vocal and hot diggity damn is it good.
I've got... some weeks in that "world" category. I can let it spin and the milk will go sour before iTunes stops. but that Music of Islam set? There's some cool shit in there. Shanka Ragamala? Well, I own a lot of Shankar, too, but that's the one I come back to.
That said, I think I'm going to follow bfv around for a while.