| Alan Stivell
, Breton Musician
Posted: 02-Jun-2004, 08:02 PM
Wanderer and Vagabond
Group: Celtic Nation
Realm: Wytheville, Virginia
| Alan Stivell is quickly becoming one of my faorite Celtic musicians. I was completely unaware that he was from Brittany! I love his song entitled Brian Boru. Here is some info about him.
this information was found at:
Few musical artists are as closely associated with their instruments as Alan Stivell is to the Breton-Celtic harp. For more than three decades, he has been at the forefront of a cultural and musical revival that honors the centuries-old Celtic traditions of the French province of Brittany, called Breizh by its native inhabitants, while mesmerizing audiences around the globe with his spirited virtuosity and vast repertoire in which the recognizable meets the unexpected. Alan Stivel was born Alan Cochevelou. His family, the Cochevelous came from Gourin, in central west Brittany. Like many of other Breton families, the Cochevelous emigrated to France. Thus Alan Cochevelou was born in Riom on January 6, 1944. Shortly after, the family settled in Paris. Alan?s father, George Cochevelou, was an artist and translator. He made paintings, furniture and musical instruments. His dream was to reintroduce the Celtic harp from Brittany. It had disappeared at the end of the Middle Ages with Breton independence. The first Celtic harp prototype featured nylon cords and was decorated with Celtic motifs. Young Alan Cochevelou fell in love with the instrument. He took lessons from Denise Mégevand, a traditional harpist.
There was no Breton repertory for the harp so Alan made new arrangements of traditional Breton, Irish, Welsh and Scottish folk tunes. He played his first concert at the age of 9. Alan joined a traditional Breton group called Scouts Bleimor. A few years later, in 1959, Alan Cochevelou recorded his first single, titled Musique Gaëlique. Alan was so passionate about Celtic music that he learned how to play bombards and bagpipes. In 1961 he became the lead Penn-Soner of Bagad Bleimor with which he won many awards.
In 1966, Alan Cochevelou became Alan Stivell. He recovered an ancient form of his family name before it was adapted to French.
To celebrate his 50th year as a performer on the so called Celtic harp, Alan Stivell recorded Beyond Words, an all-instrumental album.
Stivell states that the music on Beyond Words "is simply a journey through my life and dreams. I want to highlight, first and foremost, my passion for Celtic and neo-Celtic harps, these legendary instruments which came into my life as by magic..." Fittingly, the fourteen tracks on Beyond Words constitute Stivell's most personal vision yet, where the harps he plays are matched, he notes, "by soundscapes akin to the shores of the Celtica lands," crafted subtly with low whistles and uillean-pipes, keyboards and percussion.
Beyond Words is the 21st solo recording in the influential and widely acclaimed catalog of Alan Stivell. His first major recordings, Renaissance of the Celtic Harp and Live At The Olympia, both released in 1972, gained him wide notice, and subsequent years found him gaining a large following for albums that fused Celtic music with folk, rock, pop, electronic and world music. A Dreyfus recording artist since 1988, Stivell released several ground-breaking albums including Again (1994) which features collaborations with Kate Bushthe mesmerizing Brian Boru (1995)1 Earth/1 Douar (1998) with John Cale, Youssou N'Dour, Khaled, Simple Minds vocalist Jim Kerr and Paddy Maloneyand Back to Breizh (2000), a work that reaffirmed his Breton roots and passion for tilting tradition toward the future.
Official Web Site: http://www.alan-stivell.com
Reflets (Fontana, 1970)
Renaissance de l'harpe Celtique (Fontana, 1971)
Live at the Olympia (Fontana, 1972)
Chemins de Terre (Fontana, 1974)
E Langonned (Fontana, 1974)
Stivell Live In Dublin (Keltia III, 1975)
Trema'n Inis (Keltia III, 1976)
Raok Dilestra (Keltia III, 1977)
Un Dewezh Barzh Ger (Keltia III, 1978)
International Tour -Tro ar Bed (Keltia III, 1979)
Symphonie Celtique -Tir Na Nog (Keltia III, 1980)
Legende (Celtic Music, 1993)
Terre des Vivantes (AZ)
Harpes du Nouvel Age (Keltia III, 1986)
The Mist of Avalon (Keltia III, 1991)
Again (Dreyfus Records FDM 36198-2, 1993)
Brian Boru (Dreyfus Records FDM 36208-2, 1995)
l Earth/l Douar (Dreyfus Records FDM 36209-2, 1998)
Back to Breizh (Dreyfus Records 36223, 2000)
Beyond Words (Dreyfus/Keltia III 36224, 2002)
Slàn agus beannachd,
Allen R. Alderman
'S i Alba tìr mo chridhe. 'S i Gàidhlig cànan m' anama.
Scotland is the land of my heart. Gaelic is the language of my soul.
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