20 November 2006

Monday's mp3: Gypsy Spy Brass

It's a perfect convergence of movies and sounds. First, there was my recent viewing of When The Road Bends: Tales of a Gypsy Caravan. Then, the release of the new (or are we calling it a remake?) James Bond adventure, Casino Royale. Add them up and what do you get? Gypsies playing the James Bond theme song. Oh, yes.

Fanfare Ciocarlia is one of the five Gypsy/Rom artists featured in When The Road Bends, and Gili Garabdi is their most recent album. While often referred to as Balkan Speed Brass, this kind of music isn't all about pushing the pace. While much of it is fast and furious, that would get dull without the contrasting slow sections and without the emotion that underlies it all, fast or slow. Among the Ancient Secrets of Gypsy Brass on this album are Gypsyfied covers of Ellington's "Caravan" and Brubeck's "Time Out" as well as a colorful essay by Garth Cartwright, author of Princes Amongst Men: Journeys with Gypsy Musicians.

[mp3] Fanfare Ciocarlia: "007 (James Bond Theme)"
from Gili Garabdi-Ancient Secrets Of Gypsy Brass

If you like this track and/or When The Road Bends, be sure to check out the documentary Iag Bari - Brass on Fire for more on the band and their 400-resident Romanian village, Zece Prajini.

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