Issue 6 10/98
NEWS FROM THE BELGIAN SCENECompiled by Marc Bekaert for FolkWorld
Marc Bekaert is the editor of Flemish folk mag BOURDONSKE, and he keeps you updated on the Belgian scene.
SUMMER OF FESTIVALS
While pop festivals complain about their declining succes, ever growing number of folk and world music festivals had great times this summer! There is not a Flemish village, if it ain't got its folkfestival! Look for Dadizele, Deerlijk, Zillebeke and Hoeilaart on the map!
- FEESTIVAL 2002 in Gooik focused on traditional Italian & Flemish folk. 15.000 people enjoyed the very pleasant festival. Venetian night with CALICANTO, Sardic voices and launeddas (TENORES DI BITTI & LUIGI LAI), surprising concertinas (NOVECENTO), wild Calabrian dance (ROSAPAEDA), IL TRATURO with zampogna, duo GAMBETTA & AONZA and supergroup LE VIJA were very good.
- At SFINKS 98 45.000 visitors listened to the whole wide world. Mystic sounds (BULGARKA JR or SHÂRÂM NAZERI), kimono popmusic (NENES), fun salsa (LA CHARANGA HABANERA), Saami ambient (WIMME), Gnawa dance trance (LILA), Chinese-American crossover (LIU SOLA & AMINA MEYERS), didges and jawbone percussion, you name it… Look for http://www.sfinks.be on the web.
DRANOUTER FOLK FESTIVAL was bigger (63.000 entries) and better organised than ever. On 6 stages you had to choose between artistic highlights (Swedish VÄSEN, Hungarian VASMALOM DANCE PROJECT, Japanese KODO & DONAL LUNNY BAND, English ELIZA CARTHY BAND, Italian TERRAS DI CANTO, Flemish OLLA VOGALA or Greek legend IORDANIS TSOMIDIS) and moneymakers as VAN MORRISON, HEATHER NOVA or PATTI SMITH. There were also a lot of interesting new Irish bands like DANÚ, LÚNASA and ANAM. Either you can listen to the double cd FOLKFESTIVAL DRANOUTER 1998 (EVA 7243846249 2), or look next august on internet for http://www.folkdranouter.be
GHENT FESTIVITIES: Time of the gypsies! For 10 days all kind of gipsy musicians occupied the city festval. THE PIOTTO'S, FANFARE CIOCORLIA, ROBY LAKATOS, FAMILIA LUDA and TRIO LOYKO. Two months later the classical Festival of Flanders went on the world tour in Ghent with for example the briljant Czech duo Bittová & Kellerová, the Macedonian gipsy queen Esma Redjapova and Angelo Branduardi.
- LAVOIR-HéRON: In the French speaking part of Belgium there is only this little, chummy festival, that almost almost drowned this rainy september weekend. Nevertheless there was a splendid program with excellent French groups like BRATSCH, DéDALE and TRIO BOUFFARD. http://musitrad.citeweb.net
FLEMISH FOLK AT LAST!
The brand new music decree admitted folk music as well. At music conservatories there are finally classes for folk music (bagpipes, melodeon, virginal) and the government prefinanced a box with 8 cd's (and booklet) traditional Flemish folk music on the Eufoda label.
Rather quiet on the French speaking part, except from MacRAHL with their first album ATTITUDE (Agapès 999), a crossover between Celtic folk, blues and jazz.
But lots of new albums from Flemish folk groups:
OLLA VOGALA - LIVE (Map Records MAP CD 98005)
Fantastic multicultural project with 18 musicians, as well from jazz as classical and folk scene in Ghent. Young arranger Wouter Vandenabeele (AMBROZIJN) made a fantastic crossover with old Flemish and French ballads, Monteverdi-interludes, free jazz, immigrant raď, Macedonian rhythms and bourrée-dancetunes. e-mail
FLUXUS - PINGOEROE (Wild Boar Music WBM 21001)
Creative, new folksounds (so called 'fluid folk') with melodeon, bagpipe, hurdy-gurdy, sax en djembé. Influenced by Dédale and Carlos Nùñez and very promising these youngsters and the father of 2 of them. (Photo: Fluxus) http://www.wildboarmusic.com/fluxus/
JAUNE TOUJOURS - O (Map Records MAP CD 9801)
Another interesting young group, with a very contemporary fair music. Rocky bilingual songs in a drunken dance with folky melodeon & fiddle, jazzy trumpet and drums. This is only a short live-recording. http://www.folkdranouter.be/Map/maprecords01.html
DAAU - WE NEED NEW ANIMALS (Sony Classical SK 60674)
Four young psychedelic weirdo's get all facilities from their Musickness management, Realworld-producer Michael Brook and classic Sony label. In their own crazy way they play classic violin, cello, clarinet and melodeon, now mixed with infinitive guitar, dancebeats, jazzdrums and vocals. At the edge of roots music. http://www.sme.eunet.be/musickness
KLAKKEBUSSE - DEN WIND IS WEST (Tune Records TUNE 860116)
Well known Flemish dance band takes new direction with contemporary arrangements of 18th century's countrydances and more or less old folksongs, all rooted in their coastal county. Traditional drones, but also trumpet and keyboards. Sometimes a bit risky (Kamazurka), but still fitted to dance.
ORION - RESTLESS HOME (Keltia Musique RSCD224)
Better known in Brittany than in Belgium, this mainly Celtic inspired quartet with fiddle, melodeon, new age keyboards, nyckelharpa and other string instruments. Old Battlefield stringman Jamie Mc Menemy has joined them, and on their 3rd Keltia album you can also hear Philip Catherine, Soďg Siberil, Nicolas Quemener, Alain Genty and special guest star Donal Lunny!
THE SWIGSHIFT - WITNESS OF A CELTIC PAST (No label SW110998)
Another Flemish band with Irish inspiration. They claim to have Celtic ancestors, play wonderfull well jigs & reels and sing the Irish poetry of Francis Ledwige, Ewan McColl and their own Passion or pain. Well done! Contact Kaft Productions +32 56728476 (phone & fax)
MOZAIEK (SoNo E198)
Five different Flemish folk bands compilated on one first appearance album. Different quality, mostly Flemish or European inspired folk dances. Most interesting are the Balkan inspired FEIAR and string trio SNATER. Contact Euprint-Sono +32 16404049 (phone) or 16407049 (fax)
Soon Flemish revelation AMBROZIJN (photo) & folky girl power LAIS will release their debute on the new Flemish folk label Wildboar Music (http://www.wildboarmusic.com). Some times a group dissapears (MANDRAGORA just after the release of their first album BAL DU RAT), others reappear (The P.P.R. trio formally known as PEPER) or start new combinations: 3 members of POESCAFé engaged Irish singer Alison O'Donnell for their new group éISHTLINN.
For coming concerts look on the website of Folk Magazine 't BOURDONSKE (The little drone)at http://users.skynet.be/folk-bourdonske
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