Gwilym – Llechan Lân (Clean Slate).

Hi. 🙂

So another song from Gwilym today, the second of those three I know, the last of them will be tomorrow. I really like it. As for the title, I’m not sure whether I translated it well, I know that lân is clean, or pure, or fair, however was not sure what llechan means, but it looks like it’s slate in English.

Gwilym – Catalunya.

Hi! 🙂

I suppose most of my readers if not all already know about my music crushes and that my currently most dominant one is on Gwilym Bowen Rhys. It’s another Gwilym today though. Gwilym, being one of traditional and quite classic Welsh names and surnames seems to be quite popular there, but I was quite surprised that this Gwilym is actually a band – a very fresh and young, band and already pretty successful on their local scene – which, funnily enough, consists of, as far as I can remember, four guys, but none of them is called Gwilym. 😀 I was quite curious why they chose such a name for their band, since Gwilym is also one of my favourite Welsh male names, but I still don’t know.

Anyway, so far I know their three songs, I suppose it’s all they’ve done so far, and I like all of them, they’re pretty catchy, and cool, in some cases I would say catchiness isn’t that much of an advantage, but in their cases it certainly is. This is their newest song that has gained a lot of attention in Welsh language media and all around the Welsh language music scene, or so it looks for me as an outsider. Here it is:

Gwibdaith Hen Frân – Coffi Du (Black Coffee).

Hi guys! 🙂

Dw i’n hoffi coffi! That’s I like coffee in Welsh, doesn’t it sound cool? 😀

Any other coffee addicts here? This is a song for you. 😀 I love it, because it describes my relationship with coffee so well! OK, I don’t think I’m an addict, I can manage a day without coffee or more in necessary, it can just be damn hard when you have always very low blood pressure, but when I really want to feel the effects of coffee, I need to drink a few because I’ve never was particularly sensitive to caffeine. My Mum just laughed when I read the lyrics to her, she’s been drinking coffee everyday since she’s grown up and if by some accident she sometimes don’t do it on time, so right after she wakes up, she quickly gets an awful headache. But at least she manages on one coffee a day.

So yeah, today’s song is for the love of coffee, it’s just fabulous. And, as for the band, Gwibdaith Hen Frân are a trip folk band from north Wales, and I must say I like their quirkiness.

The lyrics are in the video, both Welsh and English. Enjoy. 🙂

Adwaith – “Fel I Fod”.

Hi. 🙂

Today I wanted to show you guys a very nice, young Welsh girlsband, from Carmarthenshire, more exactly from Caerfyrddin. They make post punk experimental music. I’ve heard them for the first time just a few days ago and I like them more and more.

Adwaith means reaction in Welsh, as the girls say their band name was apparently a pure coincidence and they were very “lazy” coming up with it. They are Hollie Singer – who is a vocalist – Gwenllian Anthony – on bass – and Heledd Owen – on drums.

Geraint Jarman – Reggae Reggae.

Hi guys! 🙂

I know, I planned to show you all my favourite Geraint Jarman songs until the end of this week, but because of some other things that I felt like needed to be shared with you first, it has belated a bit again. Today I have for you another song from his newest album “Dwyn Yr Hogyn Nol” (Bring The Boy Back), called “Reggae Reggae”. One of my favourite reggae pieces in reggae music in general, close after all the Polish reggae stuff I like.

Geraint Jarman – “Dwyn Yr Hogyn Nol” (Bring The Boy Back).

Hi guys. 🙂

Ok so until the end of this week I’m gonna show you the rest of my favourite songs by Geraint Jarman. Most of them actually will be from the same album from which the last one – “Be Nei Di Janis?” – was, which is his newest album.

This is the title track of this album called “Dwyn Yr Hogyn Nol” (Bring The Boy Back).

Geraint Jarman- “Be Nei Di Janis?” (What Will You Do, Janis?)

Hi guys! 🙂

I’ve showed you Fairport Convention with Sandy Denny recently and I thought we’d stay for a while at British people who are popular/iconic/legendary in their music genre/region, but not anywhere else. There are so many great artists who are known only locally, one of my crushes Cornelis Vreeswijk would be a great example.

So, Geraint Jarman is a Welsh artist, he’s called the father of Welsh language popular music, he is the one who introduced reggae to the Welsh language music scene and was very popular in the 70’s-80’s. I can’t say I like all his music, it’s certainly good but not always quite speaks to me, but I have a few favurite pieces and I will show them to you. This one is from his newest album, which is as far as I know from 2011. What I find good about his music, is that it seems to evolve with time. I mean, some people who got some popularity and have achieved something in their field, be it music or whatever else, often tend to stop at the level they achieved years ago and don’t ddevelop with time, so I think that’s good he’s not one of them.

The song is called “Be Nei Di Janis” which, if I didn’t screw up anything, means “what will you do, Janis. I hope i got it right however I might be wrong as I’m learning northern Welsh and this be nei di seems to be a bit of a southernism to me.

Music Monday Blog Party – Cerys Matthews – “Calon Lân (Pure Heart).

And another week has passed. Which, traditionally, means,

Music Monday Blog Party

which is held every week by Bee. If you feel like going to a party today, plus if you’d like to celebrate your life, yourself and your achievements over the last week or your entire life, go  over to the Bee’s blog and join in. 🙂

Yesterday I was at the Hel Peninsula, we had a family trip, and it was fantastic. We were at the beach, among other things. However, I’ve made one CARDINAL mistake. I got sunburned. Which is a tragedy for me – almost a Goth – not only because it can just hurt, but because even sunbathing is completely against my “religion”. Like, I don’t mind getting the vitamin D from the sun, it’s necessary for our overall wellbeing, but usually I use raspberry oil which is a very good and natural sunscreen, so you can get your vitamin D without bronzing, or burning, your skin, I also usually wear a hat or something. My skin is naturally very light, so I get sunburn very easily plus I just like having light or pale skin, maybe only besides my legs which I tan a little every summer if I have an opportunity. But I didn’t think it would be that sunny as it was, and I didn’t take my raspberry oil. And, as we were at the sea for a long time, and I spent a huge amount of that time in the water, I didn’t even feel anything alarming. And of course when I felt it was already to late for any action. 😀 I wonder what my gothic friends would say if they saw me now. 😀 chuckling a bit, but still, I don’t like having the consciousness of having red, or even just brown, skin. But my poor Dad who has the nickname Viking not without a reason, is even more poor. He doesn’t care about his skin, which is even lighter than mine, and he LOVES being in the sun and sleeping on the beach, and today he’s all hurting, poor thing. But, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, so we can be sure he’ll do the same next year, or even next month, if he gets a chance. 😀

So today, I’m celebrating my life by trying to somehow get my skin to its normal state, although not much hope here, I guess the only cure is time, and recovering my feet, which I chafed quite badly yesterday ’cause we’ve had a lot of walking. But still, the trip was awesome, even though I had quite a bit of anxiety, especially while commuting, and apart from my body image not being the best today, I feel pretty good and even positive, as much as I can feel positive in my current condition. 😀 I’ve also did one challenge of my Welsh course, I had only one left to the end of my current level (YAAAAY!) and it went great too. Although last week I was pretty bad with my Welsh and haven’t done much, but this week I’m gonna get back into some more structured and routine plan with  it.

And as we’re talking about Welsh, the song I picked for you guys today is also in Welsh. And again, in fact they’re two. But this time not because of my indecisive nature, but because I wanted you to have a comparison and pick which one you like more. It is a very popular, traditional Welsh song. It used to be a hymn, but nowadays it’s more of a rugby anthem as far as I know. When I was starting to learn Welsh, and was deeply frustrated with the lack of resources that wuld be good and at the same time accessible for me – as a blind person and not living in UK – my Swedish teacher told me that one of the things I can do is to learn as many things as possible by heart, which was actually also what I did wITh Swedish and it seemed to work because I was able to understand lots of peculiar or not that often used words thanks to different weird songs, nursery rhymes and poems. So I gave it a try with Welsh too and as a folklore lover I started with traditional songs, and “Calon Lân” was one of the first. And I still remember it, and have learnt quite a few words that you rarely get the chance to learn as a complete beginner. This song, as most of traditional songs in most countries, has dozens of different versions and interpretations, some are good, some aren’t, depending on the listener, but I wanted to show you the two versions of this song made by a popular Welsh singer and celebrity, Cerys Matthews. I’ve showed you a bit of Cerys before, with her band Catatonia, and solo as well, in Welsh and in English.

One of the versions, is her solo performance, and the other is featuring Fron Male Voice Choir. I am not big on choirs, regardless of in what language they sing, but, surprisingly enough, I definitely prefer the version they did together to Cerys’ solo version. I like her solo version but her performance with the choir is just better. What is your opinion?

Here are the English lyrics, they’re a direct translation. You can find them, as well as alternative translations on

Wikipedia

I don’t ask for a luxurious life,
the world’s gold or its fine pearls,
I ask for a happy heart,
an honest heart, a pure heart.
A pure heart full of goodness
Is fairer than the pretty lily,
None but a pure heart can sing,
Sing in the day and sing in the night.
If I wished for worldly wealth,
It would swiftly go to seed;
The riches of a virtuous, pure heart
Will bear eternal profit.
(Chorus)
Evening and morning, my wish
Rising to heaven on the wing of song
For God, for the sake of my Saviour,
To give me a pure heart.
(Chorus)

 

Fflur Dafydd – Rachel Myra.

Hi guys! 🙂

yesterday’s song was perfectly matched with the time and the weather we have here, but today’s one is more wintery, though I don’t think it should matter that much.

It’s a beautiful song written and composed by Fflur Dafydd in Welsh. Fflur Dafydd is a very versatile artist, she’s not only a singer/songwriter, but she has also written a few books, and I guess also some poems.

She wrote this song for her grandmother – Rachel Myra. By the way, I think Rachel Myra is a very interesting and vintage name combo. There is a line in this song “Rachel Myra, Ei henw’n gynnes yn y gaeaf” (Rachel Myra, your name so warm in the winter) and it kinda speaks to me because this name sounds so homely (I mean homely homey, comfy perhaps), kinda warm, like I usually have different sensory associations with words and names too and when I first saw the title of this song I thought that it smells like ginger, or like ginger tea with lemon and honey or something… so I was a bit shocked when I finally was good enough at Welsh to roughly figure out that this song has quite a wintery feel and then that there is this verse in it. 😀 That’s another reason to my theory that names do have some universal code, or something like this. Rachel itself, or Myra on its own, don’t give such a strong feel, althugh they’re also warm names on their own.

I really like this song, it’s melody is beautiful and it’s beautiful overall.

The translation that is in the video was apparently by Fflur Dafydd herself.

Plu – “Cân Melangell” (Melangell’s Song).

Hi! 🙂

Today is my Little Skunk’s (aka Zofijka) birthday, but other than that, it’s also saint Melangell’s story, also known by her latinised name – Monacella. It is a Welsh saint, or actually Irish, because she was said to be an Irish princess flee from Ireland to Wales and then live in the place known nowadays as Pennant Melangell. She is mostly known as a patron saint of… hares. I think that’s pretty cute that even animals have their own patrons, and not even only those domesticated, like cat, whose patron is saint Gertrude of Nivelles. The legend says that when Brochwel – prince of Powys – was hunting, a hare hid behind the saint’s apron and so avoided the death.

And this song tells the story of Melangell. This is my favourite version of this song just because it’s great and because I love Plu’s music, and because my current music crush Gwilym Bowen Rhys is part of this band.

Dyfrig Evans – Byw I’r Funud (Live For The Moment).

Hi. 🙂

Here’s the song that is very often on air in Radio Cymru, at least it’s often on air when I listen to this radiostation. I like this song, it’s nice and positive, so I think you’ll like it too.

Daniel Lloyd A Mr. Pinc – Goleuadau Llundain (London Lights).

This is a song that I really like since a few months and I hope you’ll like it too. 🙂 It’s in Welsh and the lyrics are in the video.

Yr Angen – Hanner Nos (Midnight).

Hiya people! 🙂

SometiME ago I shared with you a song called “Revolver” by the same band, saying I just don’t know why I like their vocalist so much, other than cus his name is Jac. I just find something charismatic and fascinating in him although I theoretically know there probably isn’t anything so fascinating objectively and, also theoretically I know that he’s completely not my style, not at all like most singing guys I get even a slightest fascination about. But I just like him, and Yr Angen in general. Not to the point of real full blown fascination, they have released too little and I know barely anything about them as people, but their music just speaks to my brain and opens something in it that no one else succeeded to go in and even I myself didn’t know there is something in my brain so deep inside.

Cerys Matthews ft. Gruff Rhys – Elen –

Hi guys! 🙂

Today I want to show you another Cerys Matthews’ song in Welsh. It is from one of her solo albums, made in collaboration with another artist who is very popular in Wales – Gruff Rhys. It is such a beautiful song, my favourite from this album.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_IoLBK0_hk

Song of the day (9th May) – Cerys Matthews – Carolina.

Hi people! 🙂

Yeah I’m still here, came back from the second round of exams on Tuesday evening and had to settle a bit, but I’m back, at least until 15th, but anyway…

Recently I shared with you a song by the popular Welsh band called Catatonia and I mentioned I’m going to share with you some solo work of Cerys Mattews, their vocalist, and here’s one of the songs by her I want to show you. They’ll be all in Welsh, I guess because of Catatonia being so popular lots of people have heard at least one of their songs, which are almost all in English, so I decided that Cerys’ songs that I’ll show you will be all i Welsh. To show you something different and to stick to what people say about me, that I listen to “niche” music.

So today’s song is called “Carolina”. As a regular BBC Radio Cymru listener I have noticed they must really like this song there ’cause they play it pretty often, but maybe it’s just because of Matthews’ general popularity over there in Wales. The video has the lyrics, which are as cool as the song imo. I hope you’ll enjoy. 🙂

Gwilym Bowen Rhys ft. Gwyneth Glyn – Galargan (Lament).

Hi! 🙂

Time for something else from my current crush Gwilym Bowen Rhys. I was very interested what’s it about for a long time until I discovered the English lyrics on Gwilym’s website. As I’ve found out somewhere else, the lyrics are very old, originally it was a poem written by Edward Richard in 18th century and it had thirty something verses. Gwilym made a song of it combining it with the melody of an old Welsh Christmas carol, and no, it’s not 30 something verses long on his album, just six. 😀 Although it could be interesting to hear it in the original length.

It is a dialogue between two people, one person is grieving after the death of his loved one, and the other is consoling him. On Gwil’s album this other person’s part  is sung by incredibly expressive Gwyneth Glyn, who is a well-known Welsh language singer. To be honest, I didn’t always liked Glyn’s music, dunno, just couldn’t convince myself to her for a long long time, although can’t say why exactly, she has a nice vocal and everything, but just didn’t resonate with me, but recently I did convince myself to her and I think this song has helped a lot with it too.

What else I like about this piece is how it’s written, as I read it in Welsh there were so many intriguing words and the English in the translation sounds so archaic and slightly pathetic, can’t say much about the original text because my Welsh is too poor so I am not able to fully apreciate poetry yet, just can try to get out the words or phrases I do understand or look for some intriguing ones. I also like that the dead woman’s name is Gwenllian, it is one of my most favourite Welsh feminine names.

It is so stunning and expressive in Gwilym’s and Gwyneth’s interpretation.

Here are the English lyrics:

All my days will be without jollity from now on
For Gwenllian’s been placed in the grit and gravel.
The longing I have is like daggers under my ribs
And my brow has become grey
Though she fell into the cold black earth
She will arise like sunshine, joyously from her ashes
For those who turn to him, life doesn’t wither
In their father’s blissful arms
Oh how human nature presses, despite my knowledge
I weep for grief and longing for her
My bruised heart, so painful,
Breaks and splinters despite these words.
In old age and in youth, in health and in sickness
people often move from this life to the grave,
No amount of devices, of wealth or watchfulness
Can keep us, or even the gentry, from this fate.
My days are spinning upwards
While the night draws near to hang my head
There is one I don’t have, I weep in a cold bed
And I’m falling ill, hear my sigh.
It’s raining in Berwyn valley and the shadows are lengthening May my cottage be the end to your journey tonight.
I’ll give you some hearty turnip soup, some cheese
And buttermilk immediately.

As for the music video, the titles of Gwilym’s songs on Youtube seem to be a little messed up, so the title of this one is wrong and confused with a different Gwilym’s song, but the song itself is right, just in case you’d be confused what it is.