What is the first thing that comes through your mind when you hear the word Gypsy? I guess nowadays we associate it with the flocks gathered on the outskirts of European cities living out of people’s mercy and naivety or stealing or even raping and killing. You might associate it with filth, bad smell, fear, hate, destructive behavior and you can go on forever. I don’t know how many good things can anyone tell you about a gypsy these days. Of course, except those morons like Madonna who preach on stage about human discrimination without even knowing what the hell are they talking about.
But I guess humanity is yet to comprehend all living styles. And with that, every ethnic group gets tagged and anyone can go by that tag. And is not a tag that you can simply untag. And that’s a pity because there’s more about gypsies that meets the tag.
And in what better area do they exceed if not in music? All the most hated people in the world also have the best music in the world. I’m talking about the blacks, the gypsies, the latin americans, the jews… Ok, maybe not the jews 🙂
Don’t get me wrong! I’m not talking about today’s Romanian Gypsy music. That horrific greek-turkish-plagiated-pop saga that never seems to end. I’m talking about real Gypsy music. That heritage that the Balkans had to offer and not many took advantage of it. But still there are some who show us that Gypsy music still lives on. Just listen to this!
The moment I heard those guys I’ve remembered about Bregovic and Kusturica. Partly because those guys are a Serbian Gypsy band called Amaro Del and because the sound of their music is distinctive. They definitely don’t wear that negative tag. The band was formed in 1988 and it start collecting the traditional Gypsy music from the Balkans and furthermore. Their music repertoire includes Poland and even Russian traditional Gypsy music. And you can sense you’ve switched from one place to another due to the local specifics that can also be felt in music. Of course Serbian is more energetic and Russian is a bit colder, but still we’re talking about Gypsy music and nothing can be that cold.
Amaro Del is formed now from Darko Zezelj – guitar player and back vocal; Marko Vilovanovic – guitar player and back vocal; Aleksandar Radojicic Sojka – percussionist; Milena Bozovic – contrabassist and singer and not last the founder of the group, leader and singer Branko Spasojevic. You wouldn’t say they would have to much to offer in a group of 5 but the band has actually all that it needs. And most important, if all Gypsy girls would look and sing like Milena…
In the end it turns out to be a good mood for everyone. People are dancing and forget about the ethnic differences and all of that just because of the music. And that raises a very important question. How come you can end up hating people but the moment you listen to their music you begin to love them and forget about everything? Never underestimate the power of music because only through music you can see the real nature and understand the emotions of humans.
Try to follow these guys and go to one of their concerts because they visit Romania quite often. You can check their website and also be sure to find them in Taverna Sarbului restaurant, where else if not there? It’s an interesting experience and can make you understand about the real music of the Gypsies. It’s our cultural heritage even if we accept it or not.