Issue 8 2/99


Compiled by Marc Bekaert for FolkWorld

Marc Bekaert is the editor of Flemish folk mag BOURDONSKE, and he keeps you updated on the Belgian scene.


Ambrozijn, press photo Second edition of indoor festival gets full house (2.000) in Brussels AB.
For 10 hours lots of youngsters were fascinated by the new folk generation, who plays and sings Pan European hybrid style. Impressive big crossover band OLLA VOGALA, FLUXUS with new electric bass and of course the best selling a cappella girls from LAS. They sold 8.000 copies of their debut album in 2 months, very unusual for a folk group in Flanders.
And they seem to be the locomotive for other releases on the professional new folk label Wild Boar Music, such as the experimental AMBROZIJN (n 4 in Folk World charts), the Brussels based Irish-Scottish SHANTALLA, FLUXUS and the midlife folkrockers of KADRIL (with new singer Eva Deroovere).
Las, Fluxus and Ambrozijn can also be heard in the combination BOUQUET GARNI at Brugges Festival (4-7/2) and in several city theatres. The new folkies have the enormous advantage that the former generation reinvented the instruments and collected the old tunes for them. So they can concentrate on creative playing and mixing with other styles. Mostly not Anglo-Saxon, but French, oriental and jazzy worldmusic. They look for and get a lot of media attention, which is also quite rare.
Lais, press photo Apart from this handful young folk boomers, there arise also new combinations with already established folk musicians. Such as the Balkan playing KI MIZION with Christel Borghlevens and Dirk Van Esbroeck, B.M. WAY with Walter Poppeliers and Bernard Van Lent or the more traditional Flemish BRABANT FOLK ORCHESTRA with extra female singers for their removal sequence called Roseland (cd out in march). Some Flemish guys picked up Irish singer Alison O'Donnell in their new group ÉISHTLINN, and ORION is not only joined by Scottish singer-songwriter Jamie McMenemy on their latest album Restless Home, but also by Donal Lunny, Philip Catherine and Bretons Sog Siberil and Nicolas Quemener. Ballad singer Vera Coomans and her accordeonplayer Philip Hoessen invited violaman Wiet Van De Leest (from legendary group RUM), drums and upright bass on second come back album Silent House. Irish playing group ARAN has now two female Celtic dancers. Folk in Flanders is alive and kicking!

More Information about this groups:

Finally the Flemish government made up his mind and announced its music decree. For the first time non classical music gets acknowledgement and/or structural subsidization for the next 4 years. Brugges Festival gets money, Folkfestival Dranouter and Sfinks only acknowledgement. Nevertheless Dranouter wants to build out a real music center in their far west.


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© The Mollis - Editors of FolkWorld; Published 2/99

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