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Kamlisajlan - Homage to rromaní poetry

by Katja Šulc

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O ćhonut 03:16
the moon the moon is laughing
 around the fire are crying
 the sobbing is rising
 the laughter descending
 the sky is smelling of tears
 we of scent of laughter
 if the moon would lose its sight
 and if our eyes would open
- who would tell
 where the wing of crying and the wing of laughter
 will meet
Kamlisajlan 02:45
you fell in love you fell in love with the sunray that makes me happy you fell in love with the green fields with my dusty roads with the storms the rains you fell in love with the night stars that delight me at night with the shadow with the open tent you fell in love with the fire by the woods with the violins with my wanderings
the blues of the miserable his cheeks are red from the cold in his hands an empty bag he is sitting in the corner with his legs trembling a cigarette in his mouth burning disappearing like a lit candle his nose is dripping with water he is listening to his guts playing the blues of the miserable the smoke of anger cannot get out of the man behind the door an emaciated dog waiting for the man to open the door to come closer as much as possible both are sitting, saying nothing the door is separating them, hunger uniting them and the anger with the heaven, too both are cursing their lives and from the belly can be heard the blues of the miserable
I danced with the wind I made an appointment with the wind in the woods It came cheerfully and everything danced the proud trees danced and so did the thickets the wind danced around our tents it took me by my hair, it took me by my arms I am dancing with the wind and the trees are watching the Rrom dancing vividly with the wind and everything starts clapping to the sound of his song in his dance the Rrom doesn’t touch the ground so boldly is he leaping with the wind the Rrom is dancing with the wind, he dances the Rromani way both of them are inviting the whole world to dance everything starts moving in the forest the trees and the thickets and our tents the wind is dancing best the Rromani way and inviting all the Rroms to dance
the prostrate mountain the leaf has fallen the woods aren’t green any more on a branch a bird a worm in the wood below him a snake the wind is asking what is the bird singing what is the worm looking for whom is the snake waiting for the cradle of the wind falls the wind fades away in fear into the chest of the mountain the prostrate mountain
looking over here, looking over there looking over here, looking over there - everything is pulsating, the world is laughing in the sky the stars are chatting flickering, trembling together night after night little stars. the one who understands them doesn’t feel like sleeping he prefers to gaze the milky way - that road of happiness leading people to a better life looking over here and looking over there how the golden moon is bathing in waters like little girls bathe in warm waters by the woods what is happening? everything is pulsating the world is laughing!
Rroms believe Rroms believe in the light in the soul within Rroms believe in the sun at its zenith, in its heat Rroms believe in the light that rises from the night at dawn Rroms believe in the word born from the pain of their heart Rroms believe in the light left by past sufferings Rroms believe in the day brought by their long walks Rroms believe in the light of the moon just rising Rroms believe in the heat born before the dawn Rroms believe in the light of despair washed in tears Rroms believe in the story passed down by generations Rroms believe in summer that slips away so quickly Rroms believe in the food that fortune brings to the mouth Rroms believe in bread the award for all good deeds Rroms believe in all that - in compassion, in kindness
the rain is me I love the rain’s tears when they freeze me in a cold spell I like their wings I want to get lost in the night to come close to a song something makes me call you yet you will pretend you can’t hear me in the night you will go to sleep and you will never know that the rain is me
sing a song, Gypsies! sing a song, Gypsies and I will dance I am honoring you all who dances, who sings along will be lucky because it is happiness and health that the song brings!
lullaby under a plum tree I put a cradle with its leaves and branches it sings to my child with its whole heart, nina nana the dew is falling - washing it a leaf is falling - covering it the wind comes - swinging it sleep, child! nina nana


'Wonderful music from Slovenia, I suggest you lose yourself in melancholy.’ – BBC World 3

'One of the least calculating and at the same time one of the best Slovenian albums of the year.’ – Delo

'The magic lies in whispering, tender chirping and murmuring, that revive Rroma poetry in a modern, accessible form. - Radio Student

'Kamlisajlan could serve as a soundtrack to a Kusturica movie, spice up the atmosphere in a smoky club, hypnotize a group of people set around the campfire or enlighten an evening program of an upscale radio station. This is the sound of gypsy blues in 2016.’ – Odzven

'Even though we are witnessing the clash of two seemingly quite opposite cultures, gypsy and Mexican, the collision of the two seems natural, even spontaneous and at the same time intriguing.’ – Odzven

Kamlisajlan was developed at the artist residencies Centre les Récollets and Cité Internacionale des Arts in Paris, under supervision of acclaimed Romani activist prof. Marcel Courthiade. The album pays homage to contemporary Rroma poetry from Balkans and Eastern Europe. The poems reflect upon tradition, heritage, values and beliefs of Rroma community.


released May 23, 2016

poems: Rajko Djurić, Ali Krasnići, Sakip Memeti, Stahiro, Papùśa,
Valdemar Kalinin, Luminița Mihai Cioabă, Romka Demeter

music: Katja Šulc, Alban Usatch

Katja Šulc / vocals
Alban Usatch / violin, viola, 12-string guitar, piano, cajón

guest appearance:
Güicho Vargas / guitar (#3, #10)
Mario Egremy / bass (#1, #2, #3, #4, #8, #9)
Shyam Nepali / sarangi (#7)
Edgar Sosa / güiro (#3)
Jessie Newling / accordion (#3)
Duarte Salgado / hang (#1)
Nico Pinier / cajón (#8)
Igor Matković / trumpet (#2, #9)
Pier / trombon (#9)

recorded by Juan Dios de Lastra at Arbol Sonoro, San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico, 2015
postproduction & mixing by Pier, RootsInSession Studio, 2015/2016 mastering by Gregor Zemljič, Earresistible Mastering, 2016
produced by Katja Šulc, Alban Usatch
artwork & photography: Rok Mar
released by Casete México, 2016


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Katja Šulc Ljubljana, Slovenia

Singer, songwriter and musician from Slovenia weaving poetry and music, contemporary chanson, alternative folk, modern and traditional poetry and endangered languages and cultures.

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