Tag Archives: Galician music

Artist Profiles: Xosé Manuel Budiño

Xosé Manuel Budiño

Piper Xosé Manuel Budiño was born in Moaña, Spain. He is the son of a fisherman, a common profession in Spain’s northwestern reion of Galicia. Although none of his family members were musicians, Budiño soon took an interest in the traditional music that his parents played at home.

In his hometown of Moaña there were also many choir groups and bagpipe bands that he listened to. Budiño’s first instrument was the flute, which he learned how to play in school at the age of seven. In addition to studying classical music, the kids also learned Galician traditional music.

A few years later, Budiño started to play the gaita (Galician bagpipe), performing locally and throughout the region with a local group. What started as a group of friends playing bagpipes eventually became a bagpipe school, Escuela de gaitas Semente Nova (New Seed) de Moaña, which is now run by the city government.

A young Budiño played at his first festival at the age of 15, in Lorient (Brittany). He knew then that he wanted to be a professional musician. He started to play at competitions for solo pipes in Galicia and won some awards. His success led to his selection as representative of Galicia at the Macallan Trophy at the Lorient Interceltic Festival where he won the master bagpiper award several times.

In 1991 he formed Fol de Niu together with musicians that came from the fields of folk and jazz music. The progressive folk band lasted four years until the band members decided to go in separate ways. At that time, Budiño formed his own band.

His first album, Paralaia, came out in 1977. Budiño invited one of his idols to play in the album, Breton musician Jacky Molard. There were other Breton and Spanish musicians that participated in the recordings. The album brought immediate critical acclaim and Budiño was praised as one of the new innovators of Galician music.

To record Arredor (Around), Budiño traveled to Glasgow (Scotland) where he worked with producer Donald Shaw.


* Paralaia (Resistencia, 1997)
* Arredor (Virgin Music Spain, 2000)
* Zume de Terra (Boa, 2004)
* Home (Falcatruada, 2007)
* Volta (2010)
* Sotaque (Fol Musica, 2013)
* Paralaia 20 Aniversario (2017), book + CD

Web site: www.xosemanuelbudino.com


Opposing Extinction

SES – Opoñerse Á Extinción

SES – Opoñerse Á Extinción (Fol Musica, 2016)

Opoñerse Á Extinción is the fourth album by Spanish singer-songwriter Maria Xosé Silvar, who uses the artistic name SES. The album features original songs by SES, written and sung passionately in the Galician language. The songs revolve around love and also have a strong social message.

The majority of the material on this album has American blues, rock, country influences along with some Latin American rhythms.

Buy Opoñerse Á Extinción


From Brussels to Santiago

Ialma – Camiño de Bruxelas a Santiago (Home Records, 2016)

Ialma has evolved into of the finest exponents of contemporary Galician folk music. The core of the group are four women based in Belgium who have Galician ancestry. Galicia is the northwest region of Spain, where there is a rich tradition of female ensembles who sing and play tambourines (pandeiretas in Galician).
The album’s title indicates their musical route: Camiño de Bruxelas a Santiago (the trail from Brussels to Santiago). The group’s style revolves about strong vocal harmonies backed by tambourines, guitar and accordion.

Camiño de Bruxelas a Santiago features traditional lyrics and melodies as well as original compositions by members of the ensemble and a few other authors. Although the majority of the pieces have deep Galician roots, Ialma has brought in other traditions such as flamenco palmas (handclap percussion), Basque chalaparta and a song by Italian songwriter Lucilla Galeazzi.

The lineup includes Verónica Codesal on vocals and pandeireta; Magali Menéndez on vocals and pandeireta; Natalia Codesal on vocals and pandeireta; and Marisol Palomo on vocals and pandeireta.


Ialma – Photo by Marius Schoonbroodt


The band’s regular instrumentalists are producer and arranger Quentin Dujardin on guitars, bass, bodhran, percussion and backing vocals; and Didier Laloy on diatonic accordion.

Guests: Esteban Murillo on vocals and palmas; Ross Ainslie on whistle; a children’s choir; Jonathan De Neck on diatonic accordion; Olivier Hernández on chromatic harmonica; Sebastien Taminiau on violin; Rémi Decker on bagpipes; Raf De Backer on Hammond organ; Iñaki Plaza on chalaparta; Boris Schmidt on double bass; Fred Malenpré on percussion; Stephan Pougin on percussion; Philippe Mobers on snare drum; and Nicolas Scalliet on drums.



Camiño de Bruxelas a Santiago is a superb album rooted in Galician music traditions performed by one of the finest Galician music ensembles in the current music scene.

Buy Camiño de Bruxelas a Santiago


Galician Land of Dreams

Fuxan Os Ventos - Terra De Soños
Fuxan Os Ventos – Terra De Soños

Fuxan Os Ventos Terra De Soños (Fol Musica, 2016)

This is a special re-edition of the Fuxan Os Ventos’ album originally released in 2009. This release of Terra De Soños includes a beautifully packaged hard cover book, a music CD and a DVD featuring the live performance and additional information about the band.

Terra De Soños showcases the work of one of the most veteran and influential Galician folk music bands in the past decades. In this case, the band got back together after 20 years and invited well-known Galician musicians to join them on stage in Santiago de Compostela (Spain).

Fuxan Os Ventos’ music features beautiful vocal work featuring several vocalists, zanfona (hurdy gurdy), guitars, flutes, gaita (bagpipe) and percussion.
Although the Fuxan Os Ventos lineup has changed throughout the years, the band members that appeared on Terra De Soños include Carmen Vázquez on vocals; Tereixa Novo on vocals; Xoán Fuertes on violin, bouzouki, guitar, and vocals; Alfonso Fernández on vocals; Maruxa Fociños on vocals; Moncho Díaz on guitar, flutes, vocals; Antón Castro on mandolin, zanfonas, ocarina, and vocals; Xosé Vázquez on traditional percussion and vocals; and Pedro Lucas on gaitas, flutes, ocarina, and vocals.

Fuxan Os Ventos was supported by a band featuring Xose Lois Romero as musical director, on accordion and traditional percussion; Simón García on acoustic bass; Benxamín Otero on oboe and English horn; Guillerme Fernández on guitar; and Roi Adrio on percussion.

The Cuarteto Saiva Nova also participated in the concert with Fernando do Campo on concertino; Iván Novo on violín; Sergio Sieiro on viola; and Rosalía Vázquez on cello.

Additional guests: Mercedes Peón on tambourine and vocals; Pepe Ferreirós on gaita, uilleann pipes and tambourine; Uxía on vocals; dancers Vicente and Jaime of Nova Galega de Danza; Guadi Galego on vocals; Rodrigo Romaní on harp; Sabela Rodríguez on spoken word; Xabier Díaz on vocals; and Miguel Lustres on accordion.

Fuxan os Ventos, also known as Fuxan, was founded in 1972 in Lugo, combining traditional song and dance with new compositions. They sing in Galician and their lyrics celebrate Galician traditional culture. Their repertoire includes songs about women, love, smugglers, blind men songs, clothes washer songs, seamstress songs, knife sharpener songs, etc.

Terra De Soños is a splendid recording by an essential Galician folk music band.


Contemporary Bagpipe Masters from Brittany

Pevarlamm – Deltu (Paker Prod, 2015)

Pevarlamm showcases the talent of one of the finest bands in the Breton music scene. The band is led by virtuoso multi-instrumentalist and composer Konogan an Habask. He plays bagpipes, bombard, uilleann pipes and low whistles.

Deltu is a fascinating voyage through the various European cultures connected to Celtic music. Pevarlamm perform original pieces inspired by Breton traditional music and jazz as well as folk tunes and dances from Bigouden and Pourlet in Brittany and other parts of Atlantic Europe: Ireland, Galicia (Spain) and Asturias (Spain).

The album lineup includes Konogan an Habask on bombard, binioù, uilleann pipes, and whistles; Elsa Corre on vocals, kayamb (flat percussion instrument from the Mascarene Islands in the Indian Ocean), pandereta (Galician tambourine); Gabriel Faure on violin, mandola, and viola d’amore; Jérôme Kerihuel on drum set, dohl, and percussion; Thibault Niobé on guitars and bouzouki; and Erwan Volant on bass. Guest musician: Patrick Péron on Hammond organ.

Deltu is a superb Celtic music album beautifully-crafted by Breton masters Pevarlamm.

Buy Deltu


Songs of the Galician Women

Various Artists Cantigas de Mulleres
Various Artists
Cantigas de Mulleres

Various Artists

Cantigas de Mulleres (Fol Musica, 2012)

This compilation presents some of the best female talent in the Galician music scene. Galicia is a region in northwestern Spain that is part of the Celtic music world, with a rich traditional of female singers and percussionists. Cantigas de Mulleres spans various musical genres, from Galician folk to light jazz and bossa nova-infused pop, featuring female performers, songwriters and composers.

Highlights of Cantigas de Mulleres include Galician folk-rooted world music instrumentalist and innovator Mercedes Peon; the fascinating folk orchestra Sondeseu from the Vigo School of Folk and Traditional Music; the female-fronted vocal and percussion contemporary folk group Leilia; extraordinary piper Susana Seivane who was born in a family of renowned bagpipe makers; the 86-year old vocalist Señora Carmen, a member of folk group Malvela; the magical Medieval-influenced contemporary folk of Doa, featuring the beautiful soprano voice of Susana de Lourenzo; the hypnotic and dreamy Galician folk-rooted blend of acoustic traditional, psychedelic and electronica by Mónica De Nut and her trio; contemporary folk band Fía Na Roca featuring Sonia Lebedensky, the young vocalist included in the album; and female-fronted folk band Malvela, featuring a mix of traditional voices with modern elements.



We have earned a visibility that we hadn’t had for years and managed to reach a wide range of female audience of all ages,” says vocalist Uxia, the artistic producer the album, in the liner notes. “A lot of the people who come to our shows are women who understand what other women sing, who identify with the lyrics of our compositions, and discover their own voices while listening.

There are many of us women composers, not just performers. We are not only voices transmitting what others write … there are more female authors everyday: creating lyrics and melody that define and vindicate us; voices loud enough to deafen against silence, singing ballads woven with our emotions.

We are plural women, different among ourselves, with our own registers and intense and passionate mise-en-scènes, reinventing and updating ourselves in sonority, in the necessary complicity between Galician female singers. The voice of girlfriends.

We also feel the urge to demystify, break taboos and portray a renewed vision of women, outside of the eternal cliché, avoiding obsolete stereotypes.

That’s the way we sing…. a true driving force, Sun-Women who don’t step aside, not afraid to speak our minds, who don’t sing only about birds and flowers. We do “cantigas” in our language, and we take care of our language and the rich heritage of the songs of our grandmothers, tambourine in hand.

Morganas who scream loudly or softly whisper a lullaby, women who know that the 21st century revolution is ours, when we will show our colors and the strong and powerful singing of the women of this country, who also has a female name, will resonate everywhere.”

The album comes in a trilingual edition in Galician, Spanish and English, with a total of 17 songs.

Track List:

1 – Uxía – As Nosas Cores
2 – Guadi Galego – Madama
3 – Marful – Tris Tras
4 – Sés – Fala de Mel
5 – Mercedes Peon – Derorán
6 – Ialma – 6 AM
7 – Rosa Cedrón And Cristina Pato – Mirabella
8 – Sondeseu – Espadelada de Penosiños
9 – Leilía – Voz das Amigas
10 – Susana Seivane – Xoaniña
11 – Lobalú – Cantar 22
12 – Señora Carmen – Rosiña do mes de Maio
13 – Doa – Levousa Fremousa
14 – Maria Manuela – Ven que te levo
15 – Mónica de Nut – Por que hei de cantare
16 – Fía Na Roca – Noite Negra
17 – Malvela – Pola Rúa de San Pedro

Buy Cantigas de Mulleres