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Budapest beats to Ritmo world music festival


Budapest beats to Ritmo world music festival

Featuring artists from all over the world, from South Korea to Norway via Turkey or Senegal, the Budapest Ritmo festival was a celebration of world music.

Monoswezi is a collective of musicians from Mozambique, Norway, Sweden and Zimbabwe, with a common passion for traditional African music.Singer Hope Masike is one of a handful of female players of the mbira, a kind of thumb piano: “We grow, we meet new people, we eat new food, the inspiration changes. Also, for the instrument that I play, it has been predominantly traditional, so it’s very important to take it to new music places and experiment with it,” she told Euronews reporter Gábor Kiss.

A woodwind and brass band from Austria, Federspiel – from the word ‘Feder’ which means ‘Feather’ – is a joyous mix of Mexican melodies, Austrian yodel and Balkan brass. Band member Simon Zöchbauer plays the trumpet.

“(As a brass band) We are supposed to have a massive, big sound – like really loud. And we are like that, but we also have a “feather” side, which is playful, light and soft,” he said.

The festival was also a chance for Hungarian folk divas Ági Szalóki, Dina Pandzarisz and Mónika Lakatos to introduce their new project: a fusion of Hungarian folk music, Sephardic Jewish songs and Vlach Roma melodies. The result is a moving combination of sounds.

“The world around us is changing, a lot of people need help. Each and every human being is a special universe, and music is a route, a bridge for every human being,” said Ági Szalóki.

Torgeir Vassvik comes from a village in the north of Norway. His band keeps alive the ancient Sami culture with the yoik, the oldest vocal tradition in Europe. “When you are singing, you sing about a girl, a man, a flower or an animal,” he said. “But when you do the yoik, you are not ‘singing about’, you ‘are’! See the difference?”

Also drawing large crowds was Noura Mint Seymali, a griot, singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist from Mauritania. Along with her husband, on the guitar, she has become a hit at music festivals around the world.

“With a rich selection of musicians from 25 different countries, the audience was spoilt for choice at Budapest Ritmo,” concluded Euronews’ Gábor Kiss at the end of the three-day festival.

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