The Windy Breton

Sylvain Barou – Sylvain Barou
Sylvain Barou

Sylvain Barou (Aremorica, 2012)

Breton flutist Breton flutist is a hard working musician in the Celtic music arena. This is his latest solo project, where he showcases his talent as a flute player, composer and global music explorer.

Naturally, Celtic music plays a leading role in Sylvain Barou. Accompanied a by a long list of Celtic music luminaries, Barou explores the contemporary side of current Celtic music, visiting with his tunes various regions and countries such as Brittany (France), Ireland and Galicia (Spain). But Sylvain Barou shows that he’s also interest in other world cultures. His musical travels take him to Eastern Europe, the Middle East, India and various parts of the Mediterranean Sea.

In addition to traditional western flutes, Sylvain Barou plays other flutes and wind instruments. These include the Indian bansuri (flute), balaban (similar to the Armenian duduk), the Irish uilleann-pipes player and the biniou kozh, which is the traditional bagpipe of Brittany.

The list of musical guests is truly impressive: Donal Lunny on bouzouki; Jacques Pellen on cittern, cello, rabab; Ronan Pellen on 12 string guitar; Julien Stevenin on double bass; Keyvan Chemirani on zarb, daff, udu; Prabhu Edouard on tabla; Gilles Le Bigot on guitar; Youenn Le Bihan on bombarde; John Doyle on guitar; Liz Carroll on fiddle; Ed Boyd on guitar; Stelios Petrakis on lyra; Hamid Reza Khabbazi on tar; Florian Baron on oud; Rubén Bada on bouzouki, Alain Genty on fretless bass, Paul MacSherry on guitar; Padraig Rynne on concertina; and Méabh O’Hare on fiddle.

Sylvain Barou is regarded as one of the best flute players of his generation. He plays primarily Irish and Breton traditional music. He has been involved in some of the most thrilling projects of the Celtic music genre. He has performed with Guidewires, Donal Lunny, Padraig Rynne, Comas, Sualtam, Guichen, Alain Genty, Denez Prigent, Jacques Pellen-Celtic Procession, Erik Marchand, Gildas & JB Boclé, Dan Ar Braz, Gilles Le Bigot, Soig Siberil, Yvan Cassar, Liz Carroll, John Doyle, Paddy Glackin, Seamie O’Dowd, Laoise Kelly, and Fred Morrisson.

He is currently a member of Irish group Guidewires and also has a new trio with legendary Irish musician Donal Lunny and Padraig Rynne. He is also involved in various other projects with Breton jazz guitarist Jacques Pellen, French-Iranian percussion maestro Keyvan Chemirani, Indian musicians Prabhu Edouard (tabla), Sandip Chatterjee (santoor), and Sukdhev Misra (violin) and Cretan genius Stelios Petrakis (lyra, saz, lauto) and also with Istanbul based oud player Smadj.

Sylvain Barou is still very involved in the Breton “fest-noz” scene (the famous dance nights of Brittany) especially with a duo with former-Ar Re Yaouank guitar player Jean-Charle Guichen.

The album Sylvain Barou is an impressive Celtic and world music album featuring a wide range of musical instruments led by the superb flute and wind instruments of Sylvain Barou.

Album available from

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and 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 albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.


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