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Ida Kelarová and Desiderius Dužda are tandem which has proved its high quality with many recordings, last time on their jazz album called Aven Bachtale. With the new recording Roma Ballad they return to the musical sphere which has already been mapped on Staré slzy/Old Tears album. This time, however, they have recruited new musicians out of which a young and promising author stands out (he wrote three songs on the record) and the pianist Tomáš Kačo and the famous Škampa’s Quartet.
However strange the connection of Ida Kelarová, Desiderius Dužda, Tomáš Kačo a Škampa's Quartet sounds, it’s necessary to say that Roma Ballads prove that the musicians from different sides of music scene are often able to find a common vision and each one of them and yet all together create a piece which is hardly classifiable into any musical pigeon-hole. “At the moment we decided what should be the concept of the album I knew it would be Škampa’s Quartet“, Ida Kelarová says about the way they cooperated on the record. “I got a contact, I addressed them, they all were also interested in the project and our successful cooperation began basically at our first meeting. We just sat down, we put all our energy into it and it worked.”
The album Roma Ballad contains a total of 13 songs – gypsy ballads. All the songs are interpreted in the Romany language; the cover also contains translations of their meanings. That is the only way the songs can be understood fully, even though just listening is enough to clearly understand the emotion that the ballads bring. Gypsies do not use sheet of music for their songs because the characteristic free rhythmic use of semitones and quartertones are almost impossible to write down in sheet music. A gypsy song is based on the expressive performance which is, without listening to the singer, almost impossible to interpret by writing. Helena Jiříkovská from Škampa’s Quartet confirms this saying that “the most beautiful thing about gypsy ballads are the emotions, feelings and their life in general which they sing about in their songs. The energy and musicality they put into their singing and playing is absolutely amazing. And when you listen to a sad gypsy ballad you almost have tears in your eyes…” The lyrics are gypsy folk poetry and that’s the way we should understand them… Roma folklore is lively; the songs are constantly being created inspired by real events. The gypsies consider the song to be one of the most beautiful jewels which adorns the Romani people.
However, recording the album Roma Ballads the cooperation of mentioned artists doesn’t stop. In fall, more precisely, in early October, when the CD appears on store shelves, we will have the opportunity to hear these beautiful songs live on a few concerts in our country and in the Slovak Republic. And that it won’t be just an ordinary concert you can only convince yourselves by visiting one of them.