Chล‚opcy Kontra Basia – “Oj Tak” (Oh Yeah).

So today we – Polish people – are celebrating the 102nd anniversary of regaining our country’s independence, yay!๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐ŸŽ‰ And we need to celebrate it on My Inner Mishmash as well, with some Polish music. Especially that there is generally very little Polish music on here. Not because I don’t like Polish music, but just because I know rather little of it that I would truly love. I’m sure though that there is still a lot that I haven’t discovered and many musicians that just aren’t promoted enough so people don’t get to learn about them.

Previously as some of you may remember, on our major national holidays I had a habit of sharing some music by non-native Polish speakers singing in Polish, often something about Poland. I don’t think I have any more of such quirky findings for today but I’ll definitely keep looking as it’s always interesting both from a Pole’s and linguophile’s perspective. ๐Ÿ˜€

Today, it’s a native Polish band. Funnily enough, while I’m not a huge fan of jazz, as it happens, both the group performing the song for yesterday and for today make some sort of folk and jazz fusion. ๐Ÿ˜€ But it wasn’t planned. I mean yes, I did plan ahead to share them as I always do and in this particular order but I didn’t really realise when doing so that they have this in common, haha!

I discovered this band years ago, when sitting in the car and waiting for my Mum, and Polish Radio Programme 2 was on – they usually play classical music or jazz but you can also hear a fair bit of folk or even some kind of experimental music, I’m not really sure what genre exactly it should classify as, it’s generally considered a very sophisticated radio station by many. ๐Ÿ˜€ I was just at such a time where I was looking for some new Polish music, especially folk music, that I could like and listen to, and I heard this song I’m about to introduce to you. And I decided I liked it a lot. It was so very strongly folksy while at the same time with just as strong neo- feel because of the jazzy instrumentation, and I loved the lyrics.

This band’s name can be translated to The Boys vs Basia in English. The Basia in the band’s name is the leader, vocalist and frequently the lyricist Basia Derlak, while the boys are the other members.

I don’t think I’d be able to write a quality literal translation of this song, so I’ll try to simply explain to you what it’s all about.

It tells the story of a girl who is pasturing her mare by the water, and just at the same time God is sailing there in His boat, rowing with his leg. The girl tries to discourage Him from sailing closer to her, saying that she is young and likes to sin, and tells him to sail to the nearest village where there are good, married girls and not to look at her because He might yet see the devil, and she is not worth His Eyes. God tells her that he sailed from heaven and just wanted to look at her for a moment. But she insists for Him not to do so, because she is young and sin doesn’t hurt, and tells him to come back in ten years, and then he’ll be able to look at her to His Heart’s content. So ten years passed, the girl turned into a woman, but God isn’t coming. “Perhapsย  something happened to the Divine boat?” Finally, even two hundred years passed by, and the girl turned into a crone. She is waiting and waiting for God, and pasturing her mare again. But God forgot about the crone, who was standing by the water, called His Name and stomped her foot at eternity.

I like how subtly pawky it is and how you can interpret it in a few different ways. I am Christian as you may know but once talked about it with someone who was atheist and we both understood it totally differently, it blew my mind. ๐Ÿ˜€

Question of the day.

Are you excited about Christmas, or any other holidays you are going to celebrate soon? Any plans?

My answer:

Well, we don’t have the Christmas overwhelm here yet, waay too early, though I’ve heard from some other people that it’s more and more visible already in their countries. For us, the “xmassy” madness starts around the beginning of December. That could be because of the fact that we have two other holidays in the meantime, not as huge, especially not in the sense of marketing and all that, but still quite largely celebrated and present in people’s consciousness. One is Independence Day on November 11, and the other is St. Andrew’s Day on November 30, when people make dancing parties or balls or school proms or whatever, do a lot of dancing, plus single ladies looking for love traditionally foretell their future in lots of different ways, the most common being pouring hot wax from a candle through the ring of a key into cold water. Then when the wax becomes solid you hold it in front of a candle and interpret the shape of it as to what it could mean in regards to your future, especially your romantic life. I am celebrating Independence Day, as in, it’s a very important day for me, but I’m not planning to do anything super special for that. But it’s a holiday so I’ll spend it with my family. Am I excited? Guess not, but I’m definitely very happy that we can celebrate our Independence and very grateful for that, and for all the people in our history who made it happen. For St. ANdrew’s Day I’m not excited at all, I don’t really care about that. I’m single, but not looking for a romantic relationship, and hate dancing. Sofi is doing a little party for her friends, and my parents are going out for a party FOR SENIORS (no, they’re not seniors, but I guess they like it this way ๐Ÿ˜€ ). I guess it’s some sort of a national day for Scotland so I might binge on some good Scottish music that evening, or read something Scottish perhaps, we’ll see. ๐Ÿ˜€

I’m really hardly ever very much excited for Christmas, I mean I like the holiday in itself, but all the chaos that comes with it and is present everywhere, it is overwhelming and it annoys me a bit how superficial it looks and like people have no idea what’s it all about, but I remember I wrote on that last year. as well as the Christmas celebrations themselves usually take a toll on me because of all the socialising, sitting at the tables for hours and feeling bored, or lonely in the crowd or overloaded. It has its upsides but it is tiring. I used to be more fond of it when I was at school and Christmas meant to me that I could go home, but as soon as all the gatherings started, part of me really wanted it to be over. This year is a little bit different because of My Inner Mishmash Readership Award, I’m so excited with it!

As for Christmas plans, we know almost for sure that we’re going to celebrate Christmas Eve at my grandparents’. Christmas Eve is actually the most celebrated day of Christmas in Poland, people have a big, meatless supper, Christmas carols are already sung and people unbox their presents as well. So we’re most likely going to go to my Mum’s parents, and celebrate the Christmas Eve with them, all her siblings and their families.

So, how about your holidays and plans? ๐Ÿ™‚

Sabaton – “40:1”.

Hi guys! ๐Ÿ™‚

Today is Independence Day in Poland, and it’s a special one because it’s 100th anniversary of Polish Independence. So as you can imagine we’re having a lot of celebrations, both on a national, as well as personal/familial level, and all the others in between.

I wanted to make something special on my blog because of this, like something in connection with Poland, but somehow I was very short on ideas, thought about making a little q&a like on 1 August, but thought it doesn’t really make sense now as my blog is private.

Well, turns out that even if I came up with something, I probably wouldn’t do it, because I spent most of the day in bed with a nasty headache and stuff, and then when I finally dragged out we watched the INdependence March or parade or however you call it on TV, and I had that yucky headache until a few hours ago.

Anyway, instead, I decided to celebrate this day with music. And I wanted it to be particularly interesting, so I chose one of the songs that I know that are sung in Polish, but not by Polish people or Polish speakers.

I know quite a lot of such songs because there is such an awesome programme on Polish Radio called “Strefa Rokendrola Wolna Od Angola” which I’ve already mentioned a couple of times, via which I got to know lots and lots of music, particularly rock music, in other languages than English, sometimes really bizarre, but really cool stuff. And once in a while in this programme there is a separate one for music in Polish, but by non Polish people, and another one for music made by Polish people but in other languages than Polish, and than English of course. And oh my God there are so many brilliant songs by non Polish people in Polish! And I admire their courage so so much, and it is just interesting to hear!

But this one that I want to show you is absolutely particular.

Sabaton is a Swedish metal band, which is fairly popular here, which is no wonder because they are fascinated by Polish history, and very often sing about it. I am not particularly crazy about them (even though they are Swedish ๐Ÿ˜€ ), but I do like them, and I love the fact that they are so fascinated by our country and history!

This song is called “40:1”, and has two language versions, one is in English, and one is in Polish, and I’ll show you both.

It is not connected with Polish Independence as such, it tells the story of battle of Wizna in 1939, but still I think it has the feel that is appropriate for this occasion.

The thing is: the vocalist of Sabaton doesn’t speak Polish, I guess at all. Swedish is generally an easy language for Poles, but definitely NOT vice versa! I wouldn’t exaggerate, as many Polish people like to, that Polish language is so very difficult, even the most difficult in the world as some say – no, or at least, not as very very much, I suppose, but for Swedes, it may be a bit tricky. All those z’s, ลบ’s, ลผ’s, rz’s, and so on and so forth… Swedes do not have the letter Z in their language, I mean they do but only in some loanwords or surnames and now it seems to become trendy in baby names when you’ll look at rankings. But even in the words that they do have Z, it’s very difficult for them, usually, and they pronounce it like S. Even in English Swedes very often tend to say “amasing”, “lasy”, “crasy”, which, in my opinion, is SOOOOOO cute. I have a Swedish friend, she currently lives in Poland and has married a Polish guy a while back, she has been almost always interested in Poland and has been learning Polish since years, longer than I am learning Swedish, and she has still some difficulty with those sounds. And there are other sounds, or combinations of sounds, that are incredibly hard for Swedes too.

And this guy did it! I mean of course he sounds very Swedish, and there are parts that Polish vocalists are singing, but still, he did it, and he did it really really well! I’ve heard that apparently it was very exhausting for him to sing this song in Polish, and when they were recording it they had to take multiple breaks and eventually put together small bits of it together, or something like this, because it was too hard for him to do in one piece! I was just in awe when I first heard this song, and I still am, no less. So yeah, chapeau bas
for him! And, as we are at it, even more so for all those who fought for Polish Independence!

Here are the two songs. ๐Ÿ™‚