Tag Archives: Austria

Artist Profiles: Marika Falk

Marika Falk

Marika Falk was born in Vienna, in a Hungarian family of musicians. She plays numerous percussion instruments such as frame drums and hand drums,inclufding the tombak, darbuka, riq, daf, daire, bendir, cajon, ghatam, tar, bodhran, and talking drum.

She completed her musical studies in Munich, where she lives. For over two decades she has been involved with the traditional music of Africa and the Middle East and learned percussive techniques from several well-known masters.

She has collaborated with various project relating to Early Music, jazz, theater, world music with groups like Vox, Sarband and Nunu.


Tigrib (Konnex Records KCD 5084, 1998)
Mariano (Konnex Records KCD 5087, 1998)
Drumming Breath (NO-CD Rekords CDNO 24, 2000)
Ahoi (Konnex Records KCD 5112, 2003)
Breathing Colour (2008)


Artist Profiles: Gulay & The Ensemble Aras

Gulay & The Ensemble Aras

Gulay & The Ensemble Aras In 1989, Gulay & The Ensemble Aras was established in Vienna with the intention of creating a type of world music in which elements from Asia and Europe blend together.

The musical raw material consists of original melodies from the countries along the Silk-Road, which led across Asia and, as well known, in old times even connected Rome and the Chinese empire. The group performs repertoire from Armenia, Turkey, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and other countries.

Exotic instruments are used beside European ones. The singer Gulay interprets the songs in the original language of the respective countries and uses her special Asiatic singing technique, which is shaped by the art music of the Ottoman court.


Ak Gice (1991)
Gardens of Beauty (1993)
Sounds of Sunrise (1996)
Colors of Silk (2000)


Artist Profiles: Ballycotton


Ballycotton started at the beginning of 1996 with a temporary band called Glakijamus. Three members this stayed together: Matthias Jakisic (fiddle), Alexander König (bouzouki, mandolin, banjo, guitar) and Harald G. Binder (percussion). They played Irish, Spanish Russian Folk standards and gave themselves name Ballycotton after small fishing village in South Ireland. A few months later Alex, headed to Liverpool (England) to join the Paul McCartney School. A substitute had be found. Gernot Strauß (guitar) was chosen.

He fit so well into the band that after Alex returned, Gernot also stayed. The quartet chose to create original music: Irish Folk with a lot of its own modern folk influences. In November of 1996 Ballycotton started to record its first CD Joanna’s Wedding, which was released in February of 1997. That same year, the first international tour led Ballycotton to Germany and Holland, playing mainly as street musicians or in pubs for food an accommodation.

As a Christmas present, Ballycotton’s label released the Maxi-CD My Little Drummer Boy featuring the original song by David Bowie and Bing Crosby and a song from the Ballycotton album Fairytale.

In 2005, the band released the concept album “Eyla.”


Joanna’s Wedding (1997)
Fairytale (1997)
A la cut (2001)
Mondland (2003)
Eyla (2005)
Jenseits vom Ende der Zeit (2009)


Artist Profiles: Marwan Abado

Marwan Abado

Marwan Abado was born a Palestinian refugee in Beirut, Lebanon in 1967. As a child from Christian Palestinians he experienced as a child the fate of living the diaspora.

In 1985 Abado moved to Austria to continue his studies with the Iraqi ud virtuoso Asim Chalabi. In Vienna he found a new home as a musician, singer, composer and poet.

Abado’s instrument, the ud (the Middle Eastern lute) is essential in Arabic music .

Abado’s music has its roots in the classical Arabic music tradition of the taqsim, which is not restricted to particular rhythms, but which springs from the inner impulses of the musician.

On the one hand Abado’s melodies and musical concepts take their power from the deep relatedness to his roots. He is conscious about the rich Arabic tradition which he is musically living not only quoting. Otherwise Abado easily steps across the border between East and West by seeking interaction with European traditions and musicians. This results in Abado’s specific sound: cosmopolitan, borderless music.

Contemporary poetry and prose often provide the inspiration for Abado’s lyrics; thought-provoking commentary on the political realities of the Palestinians is interwoven through his texts.

In 2000 he formed a duo with Peter Rosmanith. Apart from this, his artistic work with musicians like Otto Lechner, Timna Brauer, Roland Neuwirth, Allegre Correa, Krzystof Dobrek, Aliosha Biz, Franz Hautzinger and many other Austrian and international musicians and poets show his artistic openness.

His creative output includes also film and theater music as well as concepts for cultural institutions and lectures about Arabic music.


Nard (2009)
Zugvögel (2010)
Raushana (2012)
Masaar Hubb “Path of Love” (2015)


Federspiel’s Album “Smaragd” Wins German Record Critics Award

Smaragd” by Austrian band Federspiel won in two categories of the short list 1/2017 at the German Record Critics Award. “Smaragd” won in the Cross border and Traditional ethnic music categories.

The jury issued a statement through Heinz Zietsch about “Smaragd”: “Massive but none the less extremely agile, lively yet elegant – brass ensemble Federspiel, from the Austrian Wachau region, is exceptionally talented.

Alpine Folk Music arranged and played with great humor and a subtle irony, mixed with world music and old Austrian sounds to the beat of Landler and Waltz. Viennese zither and a music box season the sound of the wind instruments and a dash of synthesizer brings refreshing flavors to the table.

The septet radiates wild imagination, enthusiasm and delight in experimenting. Their humming, mumbling and whispering, yodeling and singing, up to the highest reaches of artistic creativity. And then all of it comes down like does a good wine: just like the “Smaragd”, the noble grape produced in the Wachau.”



Buy Smaragd


Austrian Band Alma Wins German World Music Award

Austrian act Alma won the 2017 German World Music Award “Festival-Ruth.” The Ruth is one of the four yearly awards from Rudolstadt-Festival, the biggest German World Music Festival TFF Rudolstadt.

Alma (meaning soul in Spanish) includes five musicians from Austria, four women and one man, with roots in Jazz, folk and classical music. Their music crosses boundaries, incorporating Alpine and Transalpine sounds from Central Europe.

The band will release its third album, titled Oeo, in June 2017.

The lineup includes Julia Lacherstorfer on violin, vocals; Evelyn Mair on violin, vocals; Matteo Haitzmann on violin, vocals; Marie-Theres Stickler on diatonic accordion, vocals; and Marlene Lacherstorfer on double bass, vocals.


Recent Alma-Videos:




A first Oeo teaser:



More at: www.almamusik.at


International Highlands Music from Peru’s Festival de Alturas

1er Festival Internacional de Alturas – Lima, Perú, noviembre 2014
1er Festival Internacional de Alturas – Lima, Perú, noviembre 2014

1er Festival Internacional de Alturas – Lima, Perú, noviembre 2014 (Asociación Arte de Alturas, 2015)

This album features artists from across the globe who participated in the first Festival Internacional de Alturas (Highland Festival) held in Lima, Peru. The festival celebrates the rich and varied musical traditions of the peoples who live in the high mountainous areas of the world.

The selection includes artists from South American countries that share the Andes mountain range: Peru, Chile, Bolivia, Colombia and Argentina. Europe is represented by artists from countries that border the Alps: Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy and Germany. The great Himalayas range is represented by an Indian act from Kashmir.

The diversity of sounds is quite striking. The album opens with Swiss band Alphorn who use the traditional alphorn (a really long trumpet-like instrument) in a contemporary fashion.

Track 2 features Peruvian vocalist Consuelo Jerí accompanied by Ricardo Villanueva, delivering music derived from the Ayacucho region.

Probably the most familiar from the Andes are the pan flute and charango ensembles. Los Jaukas (Perú) perform traditional Andean music using string instruments and flute.

Andrea Capezzuoli e Compagnia deliver an accordion-driven call and response northern Italian folk song combined with a jazz.

Argentina’s Mariana Carrizo performs a passionate Argentine folk song accompanied by a drum.

Freddy Torrealba is a charango virtuoso from Chile who demonstrates his admirable technique. He’s one of the finest charango players in the world.

Peruvians Jean Pierre Magnet (saxophone) and Luciano Quispe (harp) perform jazz-infused Andean music with an unusual instrumentation consisting of saxophone and harp.

Kofelgschroa represents the music of the Bavarian Alps of Germany. The quartet plays brass and accordion music inspired by traditional music.

Rabab Instrumental Group is a quintet from Srinagar (India). They perform traditional music using the rabab lute and clay drums.

Colombian act Dueto Vivir Cantando includes Fernando Salazar and Lucho Vergara. They play a melodic Colombian Andean song using vocals and guitars.

Andrés “Chimango” Lares is an Andean fiddler who accompanies traditional folk dancers. He performs a brief traditional tune.

French musician Laurence Bourdin specializes in the electroacoustic hurdy gurdy. His style crosses numerous boundaries, from medieval music to Occitan folk and jazz fusion.

Marcelo Peña is a quena (traditional Andean flute) maestro. He’s joined by charango virtuoso Wilson Molina. They represent the new vision of Andean traditions of Bolivia.

Peruvian act Conjunto Pancho Gómez Negrón are preservationists of the Chumbivilcas high plains traditional music.

The album closes with traditional yodeling music by Austrian folk band Alma.

The álbum 1er Festival Internacional de Alturas – Lima, Perú, noviembre 2014 presents a fascinating portrait of the diversity of traditional music from the highlands of the planet.