Saturday, January 26, 2008

Bereavement music

In Romania after a burial, there is a banquet. There is often musical accompaniement, and this song is one of those often played. It was also played while the funeral train was on its way to the cemetery. The band would stop at each crossroad to play a song, or the priest would make a brief statement.
It is a funeral hymn, in which the singer makes the following observations..
"world, oh world-
some are born, and celebrate..
some die and putrefy..
your desire for your mother and father will never be sated...
your desire for your brother and sister will never be sated..."

LumeLume, played by Fanfare Ciocarlia.


Frogprincess said...

Somehow very Kusturica. I love the way that region of Europe uses brass.

nilpferd said...

It's all the same tradition, Goran Bregovic and Boban Markovic interpret tradional Roma dance music on Underground and Time of the gypsies in particular.
The interesting thing about Fanfare Ciocarlia is that they were largely isolated in their village in Eastern Romania during the Ceaucescu years and were largely unaware of contemporary music besides what they could receive on their transistor radios, so their music reflects quite a pure Roma tradition with a smattering of western pop influences. Since being discovered in Germany and by the BBC towards the end of the nineties they've more or less remained true to these traditions, although they've become one of the most remixed bands on the Balkan Beats scene.
If you ever get the chance to see them live, take it.. it is a real party...LumeLume is about the only "slow" track they play, btw..

glasshalfempty said...

Thanks nilpferd. This is the wonder of RR, it sends you scurrying to your collection. To my amazement I had two tracks by them on my iPod (Caravan & Alili) but not really sort of noticed them before. My exposure has really been via Gogol Bordello, and now I'm lapping up Roma/East European stuff (mostly fits the 'songs you can't hear & be miserable' tag!). Funnily enough Fanfare Ciocarlia are on in London tomorrow night, but alas it's a sell out. Next time..

nilpferd said...

Pity, GHE, although good for the band.. They were sold out here in November too, I last saw them sometime in summer. Their concerts are always a blast, they normally finish off by walking down into the crowd for an encore. Kocani Orkestar is another great Roma band, their trumpeter played on Kusturica's film Time of the gypsies.

saneshane said...

finally got to listen to this your comments on Beruit i.e why not listen to original being into ninja tunes, where does the original/inspired by line stop or cross?
I'm thinking Electric Gypsyland 2..
Love the Balkan originals but wouldn't live without the remixes or the jazz inspired Ninja..
(Wish I could say this, makes more sense in my head, before I try typing)
cheers for listening to the 1st attempt at Rjd2 by the way!

nilpferd said...

Good point saneshane, I can't really explain why Ninja Tunes works and Beirut doesn't.. I'm not a traditionalist by any means, I have shitloads of remixed stuff. Fanfare C. and Kocani Orkestar just hit me where it counts, DJ Shantel for example doesn't really do the same, some of the Nuit Tsigane remixes do. I have a jazz background so anything in that vein hits me deep down, the brass of Fanfare C. reminds me of Cannonball Adderley or Weather Report.