Contemporary Folk Visions from the Low Countries

Groef

Des avonds in klein maneschijn (Appel Rekords APR 1322, 2010)

Groef is a phenomenal new band formed by musicians from the Low Countries (Netherlands and Belgium). Behind Groef is Dutch musician, teacher and producer Guy Roelofs. In 2007 he put together a band for the Folkwoods festival in Eindhoven (The Netherlands). The concept behind this band was to arrange traditional music from the Low Countries for a folk big band, with a focus on dance tunes. The band performed traditional material with contemporary folk arrangements. After the Folkwoods festival, Guy Roelofs was asked if he would record a CD with these arrangements.

The pieces were recorded “late in the evening under a flimsy moon”, and the title of the album is Des avonds in klein maneschijn.’ The musicians that participated in the album include 5 Flemish Belgians and 5 Dutch(wo)men, with ages between 19 and 60: Guy Roelofs (buzuki, nyckelharpa, keyboards), Jenny van Diggelen (flute, tin whistle), Rudy Velghe (fiddle, nyckelharpa), Raquel Gigot (accordion), Nele Martens (vocals), Evelien Smits (vocals), Kristien Segers (vocals), Arjan van Tricht (keyboards), Martin Vermeer (bass), and Jiroh Matulessy (drums, percussion).

Even though Des avonds in klein maneschijn presents recreations of folk music from Flanders and The Netherlands, there are echoes of contemporary Irish Celtic music the arrangements and the instrumentation includes the Swedish nyckelharpa, an instrument that has become increasingly popular in European folk music circles.

Groef’s ‘Des avonds in klein maneschijn’ is a an exciting surprise that serves as an introduction to the superb contemporary folk music being made in the Low Countries.

The CD is available from http://www.groef.eu/cd-itunes/index.php

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. He was also the executive producer of the first Latino feature film made in North Carolina titled “Los sueños de Angélica.”.

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