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Sunday, November 26, 2006

keeping your culture alive

So I have been minorly obsessed with a theme that I started by finding a Georgian song online. I would like to place that song in context, which is what makes it so exciting to me, beyond being a music that makes me want to sing along and dance. That song, Pherxuli, is a traditional Georgian song, and that version of it was done by a band, Zumba, that seems to be popular in Georgia now. Zumba is taking the musical traditions of their culture, and expanding on them, keeping that culture alive. I originally found this song on this random site, which has a bunch of Georgian music for download, ranging from cheesy Eurotrash to traditional songs:


I have recently come across some other examples of this. I saw Luminescent Orchestrii (http://lumii.org/music.html ) and they are another example of this. The two main composers, Rima Fand and Sxip, bring their musical traditions to this band, Rima from the Balkans, and Sxip from Appalachia. I also recently dug up Bucovina Club, an album by Shantel, a German music producer of Roma decent. In this album, he has remixed some music of some Roma bands.

Which leads me to my musical traditions. My great-grandmother and all of her sisters lived their whole lives within walking distance of each other in central Ohio. Every Saturday, all of their families would get to together, and they would play music and dance all night. They all grew up doing this, my grandfather grew up doing this, my mother also participated as a child. But the fifties set in, and everything that wasn't modern was deemed worthless, and this tradition died. And on a similar note, when I play umpapa in Austria, people my age think I am insane that I would actually enjoy that music, let alone even listen to it. For what are we giving up our musical traditions? That's the worst of it, since most likely its for heavily marketed crap.

So now the whole reason for this thread: I would love to hear about other examples of musical traditions that are being embraced by younger generations.


Blogger Vitriolix said...

one of the few places i've been that the youth seemed to actively embrace their traditional musical roots was ireland. I was blown away how many people turned up at the pubs in dublin with their guitars, drums, flutes and voices to join huge jam sessions lasting several beer fueled hours.

3:59 PM  
Blogger Jonathan said...

Interesting comments about your family tradition and its unfortunate demise. My extended family is dispersed too - but that music thing, it happens every family reunion and as far as I can tell it's spontaneous. Instruments come out of nowhere, voices harmonize like they've been practicing for the last four months... it's amazing. I can't put it into a musical tradition other than "folk," which isn't quite satisfying intellectually... but that's fine. Good, maybe - there is no defined tradition to leave behind some day.

9:41 PM  

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