When the legendary rock and roll band, The Rolling Stones, was soon to celebrate their 50th anniversary, the whole world knew it won’t be a regular birthday party. As soon as the gossips about their big new concert tour started to spread, all the fans began to jump with excitement.
What first comes to your mind when you think about Celtic music? Usually… ‘it’s some sort of Irish dances? Flutes and violins, and guys jumping on one leg…?’ Well let’s say that this was more or less what I was thinking (shame, shame!) when I went to see Beltaine back on a freezing December day…
It was in July 2009. A friend, very excited, was telling me about a band called Nightwish. For me, the only thing rattling around my head in regards to this name was a bunch of long-hair high school kids dressed in black leather jackets and armed with very rebellious looks on their faces.
If somebody told that there is a band which plays a modern version of Czesław Niemen’s music, my eyes would start shining with rage. Any type of imitating the work or this genius artist is for me an unforgettable profanation. However, I decided to give Soundrise a chance.
Imagine the times when The Beatles were regularly playing concerts in Europe. Not when their myth got to be more important than their music. A few inconspicuous boys on the stage, for example in Paris, trying so hard to correctly spell maintenant, un chanson qui s’appelle… Bras throwing and high-voltage squeaking appears.
It’s been more than 50 years, but he still sings. Still causes noise, gossips, wonders and ‘wows’. According to many definitions, he is a bard, writer, poet, political activist, and a musician. He was born as Robert Allen Zimmerman, but for more than 50 years everybody has been calling him Bob Dylan.
Lights are dimmed but everything’s clearly visible. Long, white candles dress the scenery in shaking shadows. The sense of anticipation is so tangible that almost felt physically. Then, on the stage of Brooklyn Academy of Music, here they come; long-haired, tall musicians. Jerry Cantrell, Mike Inez, Scott Olson, Sean Kinney.
Tiny, with black hair, seems shy and quiet. But that’s just an illusion. All it takes for her is to speak up and all of a sudden you will forget you ever thought she’s a good girl. She was called ‘the biggest Polish scandalist’, ‘obscenic and vulgar’ and ‘despising anything traditional’.
The United States in the 70s gave birth to many incredible musicians. Those artists were creating new genres and sub-genres of music, crystallizing the definition of rock and roll, experimenting with new sounds and crafting their own legends. Among this whole bunch of musicians, now less or more known, existed one star which wasn’t able…
Some say it’s magic. Some say it’s a way of life. Others claim that without it there’s no Music. Rock and Roll – what is it, really? The question’s quite pretentious and right from the start it’s easy to say that there are as many answers as music listeners…