Asphalt Tango Records - the leading voice in Gypsy and Eastern Music

Fanfare Ciocărlia

the story of the band

Fanfare Ciocarlia Ioan, Fanfare Ciocărlia´s oldest member and group historian, once answered when asked if jazz was a big influence on the Fanfare, "Who´s to say our cousins who went to the US didn´t help invent jazz? " On the new CD "GILI GARABDI" this matter and other mysteries of Gypsy magic are set forth. The CD will be released by Asphalt Tango Records on March 7th 2005.

Zece Prajini (literally meaning 'ten fields') is a village of just four hundred souls, surrounded by gentle mountains and dusty tracks. Situated in the East of Romania, it is no more than a stone's throw from the border with the former Soviet republic of Moldavia. This area of Romania is known for its rugged seclusion and the stubborn poetry of its inhabitants. In the evenings, when the winds calm down, the sounds of the fanfare echo from the surrounding slopes. This is the home of the twelve Romany Gypsy musicians who make up the FANFARE CIOCARLIA brass ensemble.

The art of playing music has been handed down from generation to generation since time immemorial. There is no sheet music. The instruments, bearing the marks of the previous decades, have lost their shine and gained their own patina. On them FANFARE CIOCARLIA manage to set off a musical firework display, with an unbelievable talent for intricate rhythms and dizzy tempos. Traditional dances from Romania and rhythms from Turkey, Bulgaria and Macedonia are played on horns, trumpets, clarinets and timpani. For each different moment in life there is an appropriate piece: geamparale, sîrba, hora, and if the mood requires, a racy ruseasca at the end.

Meanwhile the stars of Gypsy Brass toured almost every country and continent one can think of and even were invited to throw DANNY ELFMAN's 50's birthday party in musical terms down in Hollywood two years ago...

The party FANFARE CIOCARLIA kicks off just after entering the stage and which drives everyone sheer mad was also put on celluloid. Director Ralf Marschalleck, Berlin, visualized the two exciting but so different worlds the musicians of the Gypsy Brass Band FANFARE CIOCARLIA live in: the tiny Gypsy village Zece Prajini in Romania and their life on the big concert stages abroad. The full length road movie "Iag Bari Brass On Fire" for cinema release features the musicians' life which is based on an old tradition, a tradition which was discovered by an international fan community to assuage a hunger for a Balkan atmosphere and unleashing brass music. The movie won the "Best Documentary Award" at the Festival De Cine Documental Musical IN-EDIT in Barcelona and Madrid in November 2003 and was awarded "Best Long Documentary Award" on the Roma Festival for TV and Radio Production "Golden Wheel" in Skopje / Macedonia. Furthermore the German film director FATIH AKIN fit the musicians in several scenes of his acclaimed movie "GEGEN DIE WAND", which won the Golden Bear at the International Filmfestival in Berlin 2004.

At the end of October 2004 Asphalt Tango Records released the first DVD of FANFARE CIOCARLIA featuring an entire LIVE CONCERT, the movie 'IAG BARI', two VIDEOCLIPS, a cinematic self-portrait in 8mm by the musicians of the band plus more surprising insights into the life of the Speed Demons of Gypsy Brass.