30 Years of Piranha Arts
WOMEX organisers Piranha Arts will celebrate 30 years in 2017, starting with the 30th anniversary of the first concert ever produced on 27 January 1987. Further memorable dates of their inaugural activities are the first Piranha Records release# (April/May 1987) and the birth of the formerly revolutionary, and nowadays much debated term ‘world music’ (June/July 1987). See the little Piranha Arts multimedia story for more @ piranha-arts.com!
WOMEX – the World Music Expo – brings together professionals from the worlds of folk, roots, ethnic and traditional music and also includes concerts, conferences and documentary films.
The 22nd edition of WOMEX brought over 2,400 delegates and more than 60 musical acts from 79 countries altogether to its 2016 host city, Santiago de Compostela, Galicia Spain.
In 2017, WOMEX will take place in the UNESCO city of music Katowice, Silesia, Poland from 25 - 29 October.
Harry Belafonte (*1 March 1927, New York, USA).
Phil Coulter (*19 February 1942, Derry, Northern Ireland).
Loreena McKennitt (*17 February 1957, Morden, Manitoba, Canada).
Ivo Papazov (*16 February 1952, Kardschali, Bulgaria).
Gabriel Yacoub (*4 February 1952, Paris, France).
Melanie Safka (*3 February 1947, New York City, USA).
Graham Nash (*2 February 1942, Blackpool, Lancashire, England).
Matt Molloy (*12 January 1947, Ballaghaderreen, Co. Roscommon, Ireland).
Nic Jones (*9 January 1947, Orpington, London, England).
Maartin Allcock (*5 January 1957, Middleton, Greater Manchester, England).
John McLaughlin (*4 January 1942, Doncaster, West Riding of Yorkshire, England).
Christine Lavin (*2 January 1952, ??).
Country Joe McDonald (*1 January 1942, Washington, DC, USA).
Marianne Faithfull (*29 December 1946, Hampstead, London, England).
Eleni Karaindrou (*25 December 1941, Teichio, Phocis, Greece).
Kari Bremnes (*9 December 1956, Svolvær, Lofoten, Norway).
Eamonn Campbell (*29 November 1946, Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland).
Agnes Buen Garnås (23 November 1946, ??, Norway).
David Krakauer (*22 November 1956, Manhattan, New York, USA).
Billy McComiskey (*21 November 1951, ??).
Patrick Molard (*15 November 1951, ??, France).
Mari Boine (*8 November 1956, Gámehisnjárga, Finnmark, Norway).
Esma Redžepova (1943-2016).
Leonard Norman Cohen (1934-2016).
Leonard Cohen considered himself nothing more than a minor poet. I considered him a master. I fell in love, first with his work, and afterwards with the man. I loved the wisdom in his words and the deep calm of his speaking voice. He could sing too. His voice changed a lot of over the decades, in the end there was little difference between Leonard singing and Leonard speaking.
For me, he was an inspiration, as a songwriter of course, but equally so as a human being. Somehow, Leonard's brand of greatness seemed like something you could dare to reach out for in a lifetime. Whereas someone like Bob Dylan seems like an altogether different creature, Leonard was human, vulnerable and not perfect. He wrote slowly, carefully. He spoke in the same way. He was drawn to hard work and discipline, and had an unerring commitment to his craft. These same impulses showed up in his spiritual life. In 1996 he was ordained a Zen Buddhist monk following a five year retreat to Mt. Baldy Zen Center near Los Angeles, a well earned break from Boogie Street.
In reading about the man and watching many interviews, his humility and humour always shone through above all else. His presence, clarity, his thoughtfulness and charm was always deeply inspiring. Truly inspiring, as in ... "this is the type of human being I would like to be someday". These are the type of qualities I would like to nurture in my own life.
When he passed, it felt like the death of a friend or a family member. A disturbance in the force. We have lost a master and the world feels darker for his light not being there. But, like Bowie earlier this year, he has left us with a last parting gift. His final album, "You want it darker" is to my mind, one of his best. Lyrically and musically it's pretty much flawless and the production - courtesy of his son Adam - sounds warmer and truer than maybe anything he's done. If you haven't heard the record yet I can't recommend it enough - so beautiful. I hope it brought him some comfort to know that he was going out with some of his best work. Maybe he didn't think about those things at the end. Maybe he was just doing what he always did, waking up early and getting to work. He said in recent interviews that he knew his time was coming to an end and that he was simply trying to put his affairs in order; to finish old poems and make sure all his business affairs were taken care of, that his children would be okay.
I am deeply thankful for all the gifts Leonard Cohen gave to the world. Thankful that he continued to work through years of anxiety and depression and come out on the other side. Thankful for his songs and for his Grace. He is gone now to stand before the Lord of song, with nothing on his tongue but Hallelujah. He will be missed.
For further reading on the life of this great songwriter I highly recommend Sylvie Simmons excellent book "I'm Your Man".
Irish Music Stories Podcast
Irish Music Stories is the new podcast about traditional music, and the bigger stories behind it.
Thanks to Shannon Heaton's 2016 Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship, she had been able to travel around the USA and Ireland to talk about Irish music and dance … and the bigger human stories--like friendships, heritage, history, culture.
The Irish Music Stories preview has been launched on January 10th, 2017 (ft. some thoughts from accordion player John Williams, fiddle player Liz Carroll, and singer Karan Casey).
The Happy Valentine episode of Irish Music Stories explores why Irish music brought 400,000 people--and a band of Boston tweens--to Sligo.
Shannon talks to Cormac Gaj in Boston about the band he formed with other kids. She heads to Tulla in Clare, to visit with concertina player Mary MacNamara, and also make a mad dash to Dublin to check out Comhaltas HQ. Liz Carroll shares blueberries and stories in her Chicago kitchen. Mairin Ui Cheide, Seamus Connolly, and Karan Casey all open Shannon's heart about what Irish music means to them.
Download at your convenience,
and/or subscribe to Irish Music Stories in iTunes
or your favourite podcast catcher.
Steel Cimbalom - New Musical Instrument?
Is it possible nowadays to create a new viable musical instrument? Some time ago Petr Pavlinec (Musica Folklorica) introduced an instrument called a marimbalom (see below) and now has tried to create something new. He has assembled an instrument combining the advantages of a cimbalom, chimes and a metallophone. The steel cimbalom is a system of stainless steel plates of different lengths, flexibly mounted on the frame of the instrument. The sound is further amplified by the tuned tube resonators. Velvety jingling sounds with an almost four octave musical range makes the instrument an interesting alternative to the conventional large cimbalom. Listen to the tones of the steel cimbalom in the track Crystal Drops, which Petr Pavlinec wrote especially for this instrument and recorded in November with Musica Folklorica.
Cimbalom as a percussion instrument? Petr Pavlinec, from (Musica Folklorica), has managed to answer this question. He created an instrument - the marimbalom - combining the advantages of a cimbalom and marimba (similar to a xylophone). It is a melodic percussion instrument. Unlike a cimbalom, the tone of a marimbalom is not created by the trembling strings but by the resonation of the wooden rectangular plates amplified by tuned metal cylinders. You can have a listen to the marimbolom in the following sample.
Folk of Europe
folk of europe is about sharing traditional music from across the continent. folk of europe find original and interesting artists from all over Europe, and ask them to film themselves playing music at home. Each artist submits two videos: a folk song from their country, and a song of their own.
folk of europe aim to let the world explore folk music from across Europe, and the interplay between the traditional and the new.
If you want to get involved, drop them a line!
Celebrate Zeltik’s 20th anniversary!
In 1998, the City of Dudelange organized a big concert with the participation of groups from Ireland (Hair of the Dog, Andy White) and Scotland (Old Blind Dogs, Canterach). The event was well attended, and there was a real festival atmosphere. The rest is history...
March 31 - April 2 2017 Ballydehob Irish Traditional Music Festival, West Cork, Ireland ft. Frankie Gavin & De Dannan, ... www.ballydehobtradfestival.com 13 - 21 May 2017 folkBALTICA, Flensburg & Sønderjylland-Schleswig, Germany/Denmark ft. Timo Alakotila, Kimberley Fraser, Fru Skagerrak, Henrik Jansberg, Lamb & Bugge & Jensen, Ingfrid Breie Nyhus, Martin Simpson, Svøbsk,... www.folkbaltica.de 19 - 21 May 2017 Feile Chnoc na Gaoithe, Tulla, Co. Clare, Ireland www.cnocnagaoithe.com
24 May 2017 Homerecords Festival, Cité Miroir, Liège, Belgium ft. Clastrier & Kamperman, Tondo, Auster Loo, Lara Leliane, ... www.homerecordsfestival.be 2 - 4 June 2017 Festival Joutes Musicales, Correns, France www.le-chantier.com 15 - 18 June 2017 Jim Dowling Uilleann Pipe & Trad Festival, Glengarriff, West Cork, Ireland www.jimdowlingfestival.eu 30 Jun - 2 Jul 2017 Cleckheaton Folk Festival, West Yorkshire, England ft. Oysterband, The Willows, Colum Sands, John Tams, Tim Edey, Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith, Flossie Malavialle, THe Phoenix Ceilidh Band, ... www.cleckheatonfolkfestival.org 6 - 9 July 2017 Rudolstadt Festival, Germany ft. Focus: Scotland www.rudolstadt-festival.de 8 - 9 July 2017 Brosella Folk & Jazz Open Air, Theatre de Verdure/Groentheater, Brussels, Belgium www.brosella.be 9 - 15 July 2017 South Sligo Summer School, Tubbercurry, Co. Sligo, Ireland www.sssschool.org 10 - 16 July 2017 Kaustinen Folk Music Festival, Finland www.kaustinen.net 21 - 23 July 2017 Etnosur, Jaen, Spain www.etnosur.com
23 - 30 July 2017 Fiddler's Green Folk Festival, Rostrevor, Co. Down, Northern Ireland www.fiddlersgreenfestival.com 24 - 28 July 2017 Meitheal - Residential Summer School, Limerick, Ireland www.tradweek.com 27 - 30 July 2017 Cambridge Folk Festival, Cambridge, UK ft. Oysterband, LAU, Hayseed Dixie, Jon Boden, ... www.cambridgefolkfestival.co.uk 3 - 6 August 2017 Ballyshannon Folk and Traditional Music Festival, Co. Donegal, Ireland www.ballyshannonfolkfestival.com 4 - 13 August 2017 Festival Interceltique de Lorient, France Focus: The Year of Scotland www.festival-interceltique.com 9 - 14 August 2017 Feakle Traditional Music Festival, Feakle, Co. Clare, Ireland www.feaklefestival.ie 10 - 12 August 2017 Fairport's Cropredy Convention, Banbury, Oxfordshire, UK ft. Petula Clark, Richard Thompson, Marillion, Feast of Fiddles, Show of Hands, Dougie MacLean, ... www.fairportconvention.com 18 - 20 August 2017 Folk East, Glemham Hall, Suffolk, UK www.folkeast.co.uk 23 - 27 August 2017 The Masters of Tradition Festival, Bantry House, Co. Cork, Ireland www.westcorkmusic.ie
24 - 27 August 2017 Tønder Festival, Denmark ft. Lucinda Williams, Loudon Wainwright III, Altan, Afenginn, Réalta, Dallahan, Romengo, Talisk, Kaia Kater, Foy Vance, ... www.tf.dk 25 - 28 August 2017 Towersey Festival, Oxfordshire, UK ft. Eliza Carthy, The Demon Barbers XL, Jon Boden, Rob Heron, Coope Boyes & Simpson, Hardy & Drinkwater, Blackbeard's Tea Party, Lindisfarne, Roberts & Lakeman, Gilmore & Roberts, Megson, ... www.towerseyfestival.com 13 - 17 September 2017 Mercat de Musica Viva de Vic, Spain www.mmvv.net 5 - 8 October 2017 Fira Mediterrània Folk Market, Manresa, Spain www.firamediterrania.cat 25 - 29 October 2017 WOMEX World Music Expo, Katowice, Poland www.womex.com