Saturday, May 23, 2015

New Voices in Romanian Music

I was challenged today at work to name some new Romanian singers or bands that make good music and here is what I came with:
Note that I don't actively follow what's new on the music scene, this is just what I picked up by listening to the radio now and then. Radio Guerrilla used to promote new Romanian bands, but since they closed there was a gap in my knowledge on this topic. Luckily the team from that station regrouped in two other radios, some of them at Gold FM and others at Tananana Radio. I recently started listening to these new stations, so I might pick up new bands. Until then let's listen to the song dedicated by Toulouse Lautrec to Radio Guerrilla, "Nu se termina asa" ("It Doesn't End Like This"):

Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Origins of Music Videos

I saw recently on Facebook a post about what is called the first Romanian music video. This was done for the famous song "Andrii Popa" by Phoenix, see below:

 By music video I mean a video telling a story together with the song, not just a recoding of the singer or band performing the song. I was curious to see how this special form of art appeared and I found some interesting facts. For example, Beatles were overwhelmed by requests to perform in TV shows, so they started recording performances for TV, which they sent to many stations. They got the idea to make them more fun by adding other types of videos apart from them just playing the song. An example is this video clip for their song "Help!":

On the other side of the world, in Australia, there were no that many bands willing to travel there in the seventies, so they made TV shows where they started doing collages to show while playing new songs on TV. They also starting producing video clips for local bands, like AC/DC, like this one for "Jailbreak":

The guy doing this work realized the potential of this new form of art and quit his job to become a director of video clips. Then MTV appeared and this business exploded, the rest is history :)
I found some of the information from this Wikipedia article on Music video, you can find more interesting details there.

Monday, May 04, 2015

Save Our Songbirds

Ciocarlia is a songbird found in many places in Romania. Here is a short video capturing its beautiful song.

It is also a famous Romanian song which was played by artists like George Enescu on the violin or Gheorghe Zamfir on the pan flute.

If you liked what you saw so far, here comes the bad news: too many (hundreds of thousands) of these songbirds are hunted every year and a new law was passed that will make even easier to hunt these birds (check some more details here). Some people started a campaign to stop this law. They made a powerful spot and initiated a petition that can be signed here.