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EFN Newsletter July 2023 #17

WELCOME AND SUMMARY

Welcome to the new edition of this communication and outreach initiative of the EFN. Feel free to forward it to your friends and colleagues. Receiving this newsletter is open to anyone for free, here. Read to the end to find out how to submit content for future editions.

This is what you'll find below:

🔸News from the EFN: update about the European Folk Day: playlist with the pieces of the music repository + many suggestions for your participation!

🔹EFN welcomes new members: the Belgian musician Raphael De Cock, Linda Dyrnes (who is an EFN Board member and has now moved to a new job after being the director of FolkOrg for 13 years) from Norway, and Asimina Alexandropoulou, communication representative of Greek musician.

🔸News from our members: Trac Cymru Receives An Award For The Project ‘Cân Y Cymoedd: When Valleys Sing’; Gaelic Culture And Music To Be Celebrated In September Across The Highlands & Islands at Blas Festival; Creation In Traditional Music In France; Loccisano-Decarolis Duo: The Avant-Garde Of Chitarra Battente at Womex In La Coruña; Alkantara Fest On The Volcano Etna in Sicily - about great music and more!

🔹Our next featured member is VZW Dranoeter

🔸Our next featured artist is the Spanish singer Repompa de Málaga

🔹Special content: Festival Glatt & Verkehrt, by Albert Hosp; Márton Éri about researching and archiving of traditional music and dance

✍️ Do you want to participate? At the end of the newsletter you will find how you can contribute to future editions, whether you are an EFN member or not. And of course EFN is always looking for new members and at the end of this newsletter there is a note about how and why to join, with links to the membership pages of the website and the application form.

Thanks for your attention, have a fruitful reading and, please, forward this to any person who could be interested!

 

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News from EFN

Updates about the European Folk Day* By the editors

🎶You can listen to the playlist with the pieces from the Music Repository while you read this newsletter. It is available here. 🎧

Little by little the map on the European Folk Day website is filling up. From Helsinki to Sicily, from Lisbon to Istanbul and much more to come. Do you want to participate and haven’t put your PIN on the map yet? On the FAQs page we have a lot of suggestions for you. The European Folk Day (on & around 23 September 2023) is by you for you, by us, for us, for everyone…

For any questions, contact us as needed, at these email addresses:

  • For general and administrative information: info@europeanfolkday.eu

  • For questions about participation: participate@europeanfolkday.eu

  • For media enquiries: media@europeanfolkday.eu

* Co-funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union and therefore the European Union cannot be held responsible for them.


 

EFN CONFERENCE 2023

And another reminder: Registration is open for the EFN Conference 19 & 20 October in Manchester, England in partnership with English Folk Expo (EFEx). All the necessary information including an outline of the programme, links to EFEx and a recommended hotel list is on the EFN website Conference page

Registration for everyone (EFN members and non-members) is via the EFN page of Eventbrite.

Register now - it's going to be great!

 

EFN WELCOMES THREE NEW MEMBERS By EFN editors

New members are joining EFN every month. Here are three more new members:

🔸From Belgium, Raphael de Cock

This is how he introduced himself:

"I am multi-instrumentalist and singer of traditional and neo-traditional music (“folk”, “world music”) and also cross-over with medieval music. I play various types of bagpipes, whistles, flutes, jew’s harps, string and bowed instruments. I am currently performing with Griff trio, Edra, Osuna, Toasaves, Zefiro Torna, Halewyn, Néboa, Hiraeth, A Contrabanda, Manush music."

And this is what he answered to the question of "what you and/or your organisation think you can give to the European Folk Network as a member and what you think will be the benefits of membership?"

"I think it is important to be part of the European Folk Network in order to network and to defend and promote Folk music as a genre."

The picture is from his Facebook profile.

🔸From Norway, Linda Dyrnes

Linda is a member of the board of the EFN. She joined as an organizational member, with FolkOrg. She has changed her job and she has now joined as an individual. This is what she explained about her when joining:

"I used to be managing director of FolkOrg for 13 years, but after leaving that job, I want to join as an individual member. I’m a person interested in folk music and folk dance."

About what she can give to the European Folk Network as a member and what she think will be the benefits of membership, this is what she answered:

"I’m in the board of European Folk Network. For me the benefits will be to keep in contact with this wonderful network of people."

The picture is from her Facebook profile.

🔸From Greece, Asimina Alexandropoulou

When joining, Asimina explained that:

"I am a newcomer in the field and I work as a communication representative of a very talented Greek musician called Christos Kaliontzidis. I believe in his talent and creativity and I want to help him promote his special music projects in order for people who love folk/traditional music of different origins to learn about his exceptional creations."

About what she can give to the European Folk Network as a member and what she think will be the benefits of membership, this is what she answered:

"I can work voluntarily and help spread and celebrate the rich cultural diversity across Europe.

Moreover I think my membership will give me the chance to get better access to the exciting world of folk/traditional music and performing arts, having the opportunity to communicate with interesting people sharing interests and exchanging creative ideas."

The picture is from her Facebook profile.

 

News from EFN members

TRAC CYMRU RECEIVES AN AWARD FOR THE PROJECT ‘CÂN Y CYMOEDD: WHEN VALLEYS SING’

By Danny Kilbride, from Trac Cymru

Trac Cymru, Wales’ national folk arts organisation, is thrilled to announce that it has been awarded funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund for its innovative new project, ‘Cân y Cymoedd: When Valleys Sing’.

This three-year project will connect communities in south Wales with their local history & heritage, simultaneously exploring the rich traditions of Welsh folk music, inspiring the composition of new songs that narrate stories about contemporary life.

Learn more on their website.

Picture: Cân y Cymoedd launch in Cwmgors

 

GAELIC CULTURE AND MUSIC TO BE CELEBRATED IN SEPTEMBER ACROSS THE HIGHLANDS & ISLANDS AT BLAS FESTIVAL

THE HIGHLAND 9-DAY FESTIVAL RETURNS IN SEPTEMBER

- Excerp by the editors of an original text by Arthur Cormack, CEO, Fèisean nan Gàidheal - The Blas Festival showcases Gaelic culture and the thriving Scottish traditional music scene over 9 days of events in venues across the Highlands and Islands and this year will host around 25 concerts and cèilidhs, an education and communities programme and an online offering which will include workshops, Gaelic song sessions and livestreamed concerts. The full programme of main events can be found at www.blas.scot along with details of how to purchase tickets.


 

CREATION IN TRADITIONAL MUSIC IN FRANCE

By Eric E. van Monckhoven of Music4You The New Pavilion (Le Nouveau Pavillon - EFN member), the CPMDT (collective of professional artists of traditional music and dance), the FAMDT (EFN member)and Éditions Mélanie Seteun, recently released this very interesting work: CREATION IN TRADITIONAL MUSIC IN FRANCE – The echo of a musical world in turmoil. A beautiful object of 326 pages, mixing the views of musicians, cultural actors and researchers in the human sciences, on the processes of appropriation, composition and creation. Available in bookstores or by mail order (in French). Free digital version, available here. Learn more on their website.


 

LOCCISANO-DECAROLIS DUO: THE AVANT-GARDE OF CHITARRA BATTENTE AT WOMEX IN LA CORUNA

By Giuseppe Marasco of CalabriaSona/ItalySona

We are happy to announce that the Loccisano-De Carolis Guitar Duo will have a showcase (day-case) at Womex in La Coruna SP this year. The two guitarists from southern Italy Francesco Loccisano are renowned for their skills in "chitarra battente," a traditional guitar instrument that was used to accompany dance pieces like tarantella and pizzica. Thanks to their passion for the instrument, they have been pushing the boundaries of this art form, pioneering a new style and method, and captivating new audiences. Learn more on their website.


 

ALKANTARA FEST ON THE VOLCANO ETNA IN SICILY IS ABOUT GREAT MUSIC AND MUCH MORE!

By Mario Gulisano from Darshan


Sicily is full of treasures. When it comes to folk-based music, Alkantara International Folk and World Music Festival organised by EFN member Darshan is something to experience: concerts, Ethno Sicily folk music camp, bike & balfolk, workshops, yoga, hiking, organic food, campsite and much more. For all ages, including family and kids. Check the 2022 teaser video, here. Info and bookings: https://www.alkantarafest.it/


 

Featured Member: VZW Dranoeter

When they became a member in 2019 this is how they presented themselves:

"NPO that runs several events among which Festival Dranouter (45 years of existence, 3 days festival, 6 stages) is the best known, and from which grew the independent organisation that runs Muziekcentrum Dranouter, a folk club in our local community."

And about what they can give to the European Folk Network as a member and what they thought that would be the benefits of membership, they explained that:

Network opportunities, maybe participation in joined initiatives on an artistic or logistic level.

Learn more on their website.

 

Remember: the Featured Artist section is open to the contributions of the members of the EFN. If you want to talk about someone contact efneditors@gmail.com.

 

Featured Artist: Repompa de Málaga By Araceli Tzigane

Enriqueta de la Santísima Trinidad de los Reyes Porras, better known as the Repompa de Málaga, it is not well known outside the circle of flamenco fans but some connoisseurs consider that Camarón de la Isla would not have sounded the same if it had not listened to this woman.

Her star faded very soon but she left a handful of recordings that are little gems of folk art.

The portrait is from Discogs.

Enriqueta was born in August of 1937 in the neighbourhood of El Perchel in the city of Málaga. She died in 1959, just 21 years old. Before that, she had already had an active professional life, first in Málaga, at the tablao (bar/restaurant with a stage dedicated to flamenco shows) El Refugio, and later in Madrid, where the much most famous Pastora Imperio took her to perform. Besides Pastora, Enriqueta collaborated with other big names of the flamenco at the time, like Porrina de Badajoz, Farruco or La Paquera de Jérez.

There are no videos of the Repompa but fascinating audios such as this interpretation of the palo "tangos". This piece has been covered by many artists subsequently, such as Remedios Amaya (very different and also fascinating) or La Susi (who makes variations on the lyrics, as is usual, because the palos of flamenco are not closed songs, but genres). Enjoy:

In 1959, when she was in Madrid, she was requested to visit the palace of El Pardo to sing for the dictator Franco, but she felt ill and she was not able to go. She returned to her birthland and after some days, she died because of a peritonitis.

According to El Arte de Vivir el Flamenco, "Those who knew her remember the solemn funeral that was dedicated to her. The funeral procession left El Perchel, crossed La Alameda, Calle Larios and rocked the coffin at the door of the El Pimpi bar. She then went up La Victoria street to be buried in the San Miguel cemetery." I have made a map with the possible way that the procession made. All the way is available in the Street View so you can make a virtual visit to Málaga and pay tribute to the memory of La Repompa while listening.

This is another of the pieces recorded by La Repompa, in the palo of "tientos". This is a very famous piece that has been covered, for instance, by Las Migas, but they call it "tangos". Note that the use to the terms is not 100 % the same everywhere. If you want to listen more by Repompa, you can find 7 pieces on Youtube. Enjoy.


 

Special content: Festival Glatt & Verkehrt By Albert Hosp

19th July 2023, by Albert HospWritten on


Glatt & Verkehrt is the festival I have had the pleasure to work for since 26 years. With the final five days approaching, here´s some thoughts about the presence of folk music from Europe at Glatt&Verkehrt: Its strong. It´s very strong. We´ve had Rembetiko and Fado, Flamenco and Russian Romances, Pizzica from Puglia and quite some yodelling, as well as Musette from Paris and “world musette”, also from Paris! The latter being legendary “Les Primitifs du Future”, who gave us the honor in 2001, featuring cartoonist Robert Crumb happily strumming away on the banjo. Why do I delve deeper in to that specific project: It combines many styles of music being played in Paris seamlessly and effortlessly. And that´s maybe the power of folk music, which it had long before the term ´world` arrived.

Looking at this year´s edition fo Glatt&Verkehrt, there´s names like Hannah James, the fabulous accordionist/singer/dancer from UK as well as Greek/Turkish Duo Sinopoulos/Türkan or Ukraine´s Kurbasy, whose line up is also a duo, as the men of the ensemble are not allowed to travel.

Our audience – loved and feared equally for their very very attentive listening and ambitious epectations – seems to appreciate the folk artists, the more acoustic and uncompromising they play.

Expectations are especially high when it comes to premieres of Austrian music ideas.

As a small focus we present three concerts of absolutely pure Austrian folk music, played by young ensembles at noon in an intimate setting, situated in a building from the 14th centruy. May the walls be thick enough to provide coolness. And when I say young I mean it: None of them is older than 20.

Finally let me recommendate two exceptional artists who are actually not playing at our festival and probably never will, as they run their own: Julia Lacherstorfer and Simon Zoechbauer. Julia is a violin player who has made incredibly beaitiful music with the band ALMA; the same goes for Simon, whose trumpet can be heard with FEDERSPIEL. They play as a duo, too: RAMSCH & ROSEN! (look that up, it means something like: Junk & roses, but that doesn´t cover the meaning ;-)

Their festival is called WELLENKLAENGE, as the main stage is on the shores of an unbelievably idyllic lake. Neve been ther, though, see above ;-)

Speaking of untranslatable titles: Glatt&Verkehrt hints at a certain folk dance step (“straight forward and back”) as well as a common knitting pattern, and finally, it means: Be prepared for the unexpected!

Which is a good thing for folk music, which still holds so much to discover.

The editors have allowed ourselves to include a video of each of the two Austrian artists that Albert has recommended. We are sure you will enjoy them. Here's Julia Lacherstorfer performing live:


And this is a videoclip for a lovely piece performed by Simon Zöchbauer:


And, finally, their duo, Ramsch & Rosen:


 

Special content: Márton Éri about researching and archiving of traditional music and dance By Araceli Tzigane

Márton Éri is a Hungarian musician, member of the extint Buda Folk Band and currently member of several bands, like Erdőfű and Mártones. A few weeks ago Silvia Wrinkler told me about her research and archiving work, which continued the work done previously by Martin György and Borbély Jolán. I found it interesting in itself, as well as aligned with an interest from the European Folk Network. By the way, I think this is the perfect moment to mention that Nod Knowles, our coordinator of the EFN, will host a panel in WOMEX 2023, called "Archives: Living Heritage Or History?" about which you can learn more here. But now, let's leave the floor to Márton!

  • Why are you doing research on traditional music? Why is it important for you?

My late stepfather, Martin György, recorded a vast amount - covering hundreds of thousands of kilometers on tape - dance and music material throughout his short but eventful scientific career. In addition, he contributed approximately 80 publications, mostly focusing on the authentic musical and dance traditions of the Carpathian Basin. He was also responsible for initiating and professionally establishing the Hungarian dancehouse movement that began in the 1970s. His wife, Borbély Jolán, also had an ethnographic background and accompanied Martin on his field recordings during their marriage. Later on, my father also joined the ranks, initially handling the tape recorder and later conducting his own collections. Eventually, his love for folk music became so infectious that during his high school years, he joined the pioneering band of the blossoming movement, the Sebő Ensemble. Shortly after, he was invited by the founding members of the Muzsikás Ensemble to join the band, and since then, he has been traveling the world with them, contributing to the reputation of Hungarian folk music. I somehow stumbled into this world, and despite envisioning my future differently at the beginning, this captivating virus eventually knocked me off my feet.

  • If you approach people who you didn't know yet, how do you do it? What do you have to take into consideration to facilitate communication with them?

When Borbély Jolán met someone unfamiliar to her, she never asked for their name but rather inquired, "Whom I can respect in you?" She always shared the details of her own ancestry, relatives, their origins from specific villages and regions, and precisely what she did for a living and what was her actual purpose of their meeting. This short sentence was taught me that the exploration of our own and other peoples' cultures is of elementary importance from the aspect of finding out where we come from and where we are heading in our life and also very important to know what type of people who surround us, as well as the communities we are part of. After all, humans are fundamentally social beings, even though we tend to forget this fact in today's fast-paced world. As a folk musician, my task is to entertain people, whether they are familiar or strangers. Although many may think it is an easy task, it becomes challenging when you are just not in complete harmony with yourself due to external or internal factors. With my anthropological background, I consider myself as a "good connoisseur of people”. I enjoy talking to them and sharing laughter. My mother was a very approachable and empathetic person who was loved by many and with whom one could discuss anything. She possessed exceptional communication skills, wrote fantastically, and was a remarkable story teller, adding humor and facial expressions to her repertoire. In other words, I had a "mentor" from whom I could learn that kind of immediacy, which helps me quickly adapt in unfamiliar environments. Of course, there are people I cannot establish a closer connection, even if I were to stand on my head, or those I can tell from the first eye contact that they do not sympathize with me. In such cases, I quickly take two steps back and focus on those within the community with whom I already have a good relationship, hoping that through them, I can reach the heart of the other person as well. This approach usually works, but sometimes it simply doesn't. In the latter case, especially when I am in work environment and feel that they hinder its realization, I reluctantly bring out my stricter self. At such times, my sole concern is to accomplish the task entrusted to me, whether it involves editing a radio program, collecting music on the field trips, or successfully performing on stage.

  • Are you finding nowadays still performers or pieces or styles that were still unknown to you?

Everyone has their own natural path of development from childhood to adulthood, starting with children's songs, counting rhymes, and poems, leading to the ability to determine their musical preferences and interests in different musical styles. As a musician myself, it is likely that my knowledge of the musical palette is more diverse and extensive than an average person, but I don't presume to know everything. Even within folk music, there are surprises, and as I grow older, it becomes increasingly apparent how much other music exists in the world.

  • How do you use the content of what you find? Do you use it for your artistic creation? Can other people access the content of your research? If so, how?

In my family, I was taught that important and authentic knowledge for the community must be shared, while your own intellectual creations naturally belong to you, and you can take pride in them. Therefore, the collections made by my ancestors are publicly available; for example, we handed over Martin's legacy to the appropriate institutions, which can perhaps take even better care of them than we ever could. Let's not forget that the incredible amount of film and audio material he recorded quickly deteriorates if not stored under proper conditions. The processing and organization of this vast database require a separate apparatus and manpower which we as a family couldn't provide. As for the recordings I have made - specifically, my recent work with the urban roma or gipsy musicians - they were created using digital tools and in studio conditions. These recordings will be cataloged and made available in incredible quality to anyone with just a click on the internet. Honestly, I can't wait for this to become a reality!

  • How is this work financed?

When I was in my teenager years, traveling to Transylvania with a backpack and a tape recorder to collect folk music, I didn't yet have the scientific ambition, knowledge, or proper equipment to make professional recordings of the village musicians from whom I learned the technic of playing music from first-hand. Crossing borders was still quite difficult at that time, and people still harbored fear instilled by the oppressive regime of socialism. Interestingly, the musicians here never asked me for money in return playing music for me. However, in 2019, the on-location recordings with urban Roma musicians were made within the framework of a government grant, with the distribution handled by the Hungarian-based institution, House of Heritage. Through a tender under the pandemic, some of these recordings were released on an album, which is also available on the popular music platform: Spotify. The recordings of folk music and those featuring restaurant "urban” gypsy musicians, which will soon be accessible on the internet, are also supported by House of Heritage.

 

HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS NEWSLETTER Are you already a member? Then, remember that you can submit contents for this monthly newsletter. Email your content to efneditors@gmail.com, for these sections:

· News from EFN Members. Brief announcements – of around 100 words and a link.

· Featured artist. A profile with around 200 words, an embedded video and one link. Members are invited to submit profiles, considering solo and ensemble living or not living artists who have achieved lifelong artistic and technical quality or historical significance in the field of folk art from or developed in or settled in Europe. If you have any artists in mind that you'd like to feature, please ask in advance, just to be sure there is no other member already doing it.

And whether you are a member or not, you can participate in this section:

· Special sections. For instance, an interview with someone from an institution that is not a member or a thematic article by a guest writer or anything that can appear and be considered as interesting. This section can also host guest writers that are not members. If you'd like to share any content, contact us in advance to schedule it by emailing efneditors@gmail.com

Of course, self promotional articles lacking interest won't be accepted. In case of doubt, the EFN board will be consulted and will decide.

 

BECOMING A MEMBER? EFN membership is growing rapidly – why not join the network of traditional arts organisers and artists that stretches across Europe from the Irish Sea to the Baltic, the Mediterranean to the Black Sea? Find out more about membership and download an application form from www.europeanfolknetwork.com/membership.

 

DO YOU WANT TO SUPPORT THE EFN MORE? The EFN welcomes donations. We do a lot with little money. Imagine what we can do with a little more :) Let us know how much do you want to donate and we'll issue an invoice for your organization.

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