Nils Økland is a renowned master of Norway's national instrument: the Hardanger violin. He built an international reputation with his innovative playing style, seeking links to classical and contemporary music as well as jazz. With his band, he presents their first album Lysning (Hubro).
Økland uses no written musical notes for his compositions - all pieces are rehearsed by ear. "Our verbal method could be even stronger this time," he says.
It is not difficult to prove him right: an audible sense of boldness and a powerful presence are felt throughout the album.
Nils Økland Band
Nils Økland (hardanger fiddle, viola d'amore) Rolf-Erik Nystrøm (saxophone), Sigbjørn Apeland (organ), Mats Eilertsen (double bass)
Jiraan is a music collective led by violinist and composer Shalan Alhamwy. Twelve top-class musicians explore their common musical ground within Middle Eastern, jazz and Balkan music traditions. They create a cross-cultural "sound" that sounds recognizable and fresh at the same time.
With this latest project, Jiraan goes in search of the roots of the sirto(s), an instrumental musical form found in Greek, Turkish and Arabic music traditions. Traditionally, the music accompanies a popular dance in which dancers join hands to form a chain or circle, similar to the hora from the Balkans, the halay from Turkey and the dabke from the Levant.
All these influences come together in one ensemble and one marvelous concert evening.
Shalan Alhamwy (SY|BE - violin & arrangements), Mohamad Aldouri (IQ|BE - violin), Ibrahim Kahila (SY|BE - viola & vocal), Emine Bostanci (TR|NL - kemenche), Damla Aydin (TR|BE - cello), Kathrien Bos (NL|BE - double bass), Omar Znkawan (SY|DE - sax & clarinet), Lucie Lelaurain (FR|NL - duduk & flute), Maher Mahmoud (SY|DK - oed), Galina Velikova (BG|BE - vocals), Jacobus Thiele (DE|NL - percussion), Jonas Malfliet (BE - piano & accordion)
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