Karolina Czarnecka ft. UV – “Ronja”.

Hi guys. 🙂

I thought I’d share with you another song by this Polish singer, from her last album. The rest of her music is much less widely known than the song I showed you yesterday, which I think is a pity, but on the other hand I guess it’s better, good things shouldn’t fall into the same bag with all the mainstream, or usually shouldn’t, as it doesn’t do much good to them. ANyway, if you’ve ever read “Ronja The Robber’s Daughter” by Astrid Lindgren you can easily guess by the title itself that this song is inspired by the book. Because I really like Astrid Lindgren, and because I think Ronja, just as all Lindgren’s character, is very inspiring, I really like this song. And it just sounds good.

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Karolina Czarnecka – “Hera, Koka, Hasz, LSD” (Heroine, Cocaine, Hash, LSD).

Hey hey people. 🙂

Why do I post such weird stuff on here?… I’m very curious if someone will be wondering, even seeing the title… I actually wouldn’t be overly surprised. 😀

This is a Polish song, as you can probably guess, haven’t shared anything in Polish with you for ages, well as I wrote a few times before I don’t really listen to that very much Polish music nowadays and if I do, the lyrics play very important part and without them it’s often just a piece of weird music so there’s no point in sharing it with you.

Karolina Czarnecka has become somewhat famous in 2014 when she sang this particular song I’m going to share with you, on one of the Polish music festivals. It is an interpretation of a song made by The Tiger Lilies “Heroine And Cocaine”. The festival was rather marginal but quite surprisingly the song became popular on Youtube and then actually nationwide, and at the same time became hugely controversial. I know people who were saying that it is absolute trash and how can such a controversial song, PROMOTING DRUGS (!!! 😱 ) and encouraging to share them, be so fussed about and even still exist on Youtube, that it is odd and just inappropriate and obscene. I thought so too, for quite a long time.

About a year ago, after the boom has washed away, I stumbled on a then newest album of Karolina Czarnecka, very accidentally, and I felt some sort of liking to her rather characteristic, original, versatile style, her strong voice, slightly odd lyrics and music that seemed to just somewhat click with my brain, as a blend of electronica, folk, and lots of stuff in between.

So it made me wonder, what’s up with this “Hera, Koka…” thing, maybe it’s some misunderstanding, maybe the point of it is different? And after I really listened to it carefully, I came to the conclusion that the point of this song is entirely different! THe opposite actually. It is said that the character in the song – Jimmy – has died because of drugs, and his friends did too! – Now it makes much more sense and was a lesson for me to not judge a book by its cover because all the others do so, but rather analyse it more closely.

Recently I also listened to the original song by The Tiger Lilies, and there it is even clearer that poor Jimmy has died, I can’t remember the exact lyrics but there was a mention that he went to heaven. In Karolina’s interpretation there is a mention of “paradise”, which could be understood differently, that he simply got so very high, and seems like most people understand it this way. I know this song can feel very dubious and challenging, and it certainly is provoking, but rather to increased use of our brains, than drugs. After all, there had to be some reason behind it when God equipped us with such powerful devices, so let’s use them and try to think independently, don’t you think so? 😉 I like how ironic and sarcastic it is, rather than saying straight forward: “DRUGS ARE EVIL!!!”. Well I guess I’ve gotten used to such irony or even a little obscenity, having a crush on Vreeswijk. However, I still felt somewhat cautious when the thought came to my mind that maybe I’d share this little piece of music with you. Is it really what I think it is? So of course I did some research and I managed to find an interview with Karolina Czarnecka on Youtube, where she is asked what was her message behind her interpretation of this song, and whether she was aware of the reaction of people to it. She said that yes she was, and that her message was just the opposite and clear to find in the lyrics, that drugs cause death. Don’t know whether there is a point in linking to that interview as it is in Polish and the vast majority of my blog readers aren’t Polish, and I’m too lazy haha, if you’re Polish it’s rather easy to find but if you really can’t and are curious I can include it later on for some further reference, just let me know. 🙂

I am also not including THe Tiger Lilies’ version, because Karolina’s version is not a direct translation of it, and because I just much prefer the Polish version. First because in my opinion it’s much more interesting musically, much more creative and the lyrics are sort of more imaginative and detailed too, with more character, hence probably being more provocative.

I don’t feel competent enough to translate the Polish lyrics  to English, and if you happen to know The Tiger Lilies’ original song you know the basic sense, I’ll say that the song tells the story of Jimmy, a good, shy kid, going to school as he was supposed to, to whom the drug dealer sold three fixes of drugs and gave him one for free. At school, the “wise” headmaster got cross with him and told him not to be selfish and share it all fairly with all the students. And then as I’ve already mentioned, Jimmy, together with his friends ended up in paradise, where “all saints started to drug with him”.

OK, so here it is. 🙂 I’m curious of your impressions. 🙂

Dubska – Bajki (Fables).

Hi. 🙂

Have you ever heard any Polish reggae? If not, now you can. Reggae is really a thing here, particularly if you listen to alternative music scene, you just can’t not be familiar with it, but its influences are also visible in our modern mainstream music from time to time. When I was a kid, I loved to listen to a radiostation which very sadly no longer exists now, called Polish Radio Bis. It was directed at young people and they played a lot of alternative music – rock, rap, chillout, club music, folk, house, and reggae, dub and ska and all the related stuff. This in a way drew me to reggae music, particularly Polish reggae, and I had a short but stormy time in my life when I really really liked reggae, particularly a band called Vavamuffin. And I still like them, although I’m no longer even half as crazy about reggae as I was back then.

Dubska is one of the younger Polish reggae/dub bands, and, in my opinion, one of more accessible for not reggae geeks. Usually, reggae is filled with some kind of slang, plus all the rastafari culture related words, plus Jamaican phrases, and English with very hard, Polish-(pseudo)Jamaican English accent mixed with Polish, so that outsiders can’t get much out of it sometimes. But as far as I know, Dubska have most of their texts in Polish, and even if they’re in English, I guess they’re also pretty understandable for those who haven’t ever been into reggae. Their texts are about life and its various aspects, often a bit phylosophical, like this one.

“Bajki” is their new song. The word bajki means tales or fables, but it also may colloquially mean something like boosh, nonsense. The song is very universal imo, and I think will be always actual. It’s about people telling lies and taking advantage of it, and spreading the evil and war, etc.

Question of the day.

Share a link to a music video you think is great (not necessarily a great song but visual a very good video).

My answer:

Well I’m certainly not an expert at music videos (he he he), but I’ve been told this one is good. This singer – Kayah – was for a long time my Mum’s favourite female vocalist – my Mum likes kinda androgynous female singers, or black singers, like Sade for example, other than that she only listens to male vocalists, maybe because she herself is kinda tomboy. This woman is a very popular Polish celebrity, but sometime ago she started to come out with her views which were glaringly contrasting to my Mum’s, and so she doesn’t like her so much now anymore. But she watched this video and she says it’s beautiful and from what she told me it really seems so. When she showed it to me yesterday I got an impression it has a sorta pagan feel, on which my Mum agreed with me, today I realised it was purposeful to make it feel pagan, but it’s not too pagan as for my standards, like there’s nothing literally refering to any culture/religion or anything. It’s just about the relationship of the human with the nature, unity of a woman and a man, which are natural, beautiful and obvious things. You can also feel some old Slavic influences, I guess they were inspired by Slavic mythology or something. The guy who directed this is one of the directors of The Witcher, the composer of the song is atanas Valkov who is a Polish music producer, multiinstrumentalist and composer of Bulgarian descent. The song is called Czarna Polana (Black Glade). I think it sounds fantastic and the overall effect must be indeed beautiful.

I thought I’d translate the lyrics as they’re fairly easy so you’d get some idea what it’s about, although I’m sorry if it’s not quite the best stylistically:

   I am close

You do not have to be afraid anymore

You will find everything in me.

Because that is how much I can give.

When you are close

The world does not scare me

And when you give me your hand

It will become a whole.

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no.

Always close

no need to be afraid anymore

You and me are one

As long as the life is lasting.

Coexistence.

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no

I am nowhere without you

You are nowhere without me

I am nowhere without you, no.

I am close

You do not have to be afraid anymore

You will find everything in me

Because that is how much I can give.

When you are close

The world does not scare me

And when you give me your hand

It will become a whole.

Yours? 🙂

Song of the day – Kortez – “Dla Mamy (for mum).

Hi! 🙂

Wanted to continue with my favourite Gabrielle Aplin songs, but put aside for today because… because today is my Mum’s and my brother’s birthday, yes, they have birthday on the same day, so I wanted to celebrate it somehow.

And this song seems perfect for this purpose. Kortez is a Polish singer, whom my Mum has a pretty big crush on, almost as big as my crush on Gwilym is right now. Kortez’s music is quite speciffic and he’s rather speciffic too, and I think people most often love his music  or hate it, rarely something in between. His songs are very melancholic, depressive even, but beautiful. I like him too and this song is the first song by him I’ve ever heard. It describes Kortez’s relationship with his mum which apparently is very close.

But it also describes perfectly the relationship between my Mum and Olek. She showed me this song last year and asked me if I also think it does and then when we listened to it, we both started to cry. The text is fairly easy so I’ll try to translate it:

 

For mum

I will bruise myself
I will get lost somewhere
I will lie to you
you will refrain from anger.
I will desire stars,
You will give everything
and I will take everything.
I will dance a night away,
I will believe in something,
I will hit the bottom,
I will travel far and wide,
I will make a mistake,
I will shout out the anger
because you stand firmly behind me

I will give you field flowers for that,
I will send you a letter,
I will take you for a walk
I will make a present for you
I will tell you a bedtime story.

I will stand up to somebody,
I will achieve my goal
I will feel ashamed
and I will be upset.
I will raise my voice,
I will build a house
and you will be proud.
I’m not afraid
I know what I want
and I will keep going
I will keep going ahead
I will look back
I will look for you
and I will not find you.

I will give you field flowers for that,
I will send you a letter,
I will take you for a walk
I will make a present for you
I will tell you a bedtime story.
Isn’t it a great description of son-mother relationship?

So here’s the song:

Song of the day – Maja Koman – Babcia Mówi (Grandma Says).

Hi! 🙂

I wanted to share another Enya’s song with you today, but then realised that oh wow it’s International Mother Language Day, so, well… mother language, yay! It’s definitely a time to show you something in Polish, this blog exists almost for a month and still nothing in Polish here.

The truth is… I don’t listen to Polish music very much. It’s not I don’t listen to it at all, ’cause I do at times,  and it’s not I’m not patriotic or don’t like my mother tongue, in fact I love it and (pretty obviously I think) it’s one of my around 12 favourite languages, I think me and my whole family are very patriotic. But I just listen to so much music in other languages, in Swedish, in all the endangered languages I love, in English obviously, so that most music I listen to in Polish are just random things I hear in radio in the kitchen or somewhere else, and when Ilisten to something in Polish just because I really want to and enjoy it, I mostly like it for the lyrics, it’s most often something alternative, or reggae, some folk at times. So I felt like it would be hard for me to make you like it if you won’t be able to understand the lyrics. So I wondered for quite a while what to pick.

But finally I picked something. It is a humourous, ironical, but also very true song and although lyrics are most important in it, I think you’ll like it.

Maja Koman is a young artist from Greater Poland, she writes songs for herself and plays ukulele, is a bit of an eccentric and her lyrics are usually ironic, honest, funny, a bit sarcastic. She also writes songs in English and French, but most of them are in Polish.

This particular song – “Babcia Mówi” – is basically about how men and women, very generally, changed since our grandparents were young. This song should be definitely taken with a grain of salt and it’s surely not a generalisation, but it says that men become less masculine, more like females, while women aren’t as feminine as they used to be either. 😀 By the way, I feel like it’s a perfect example of that hiraeth thing I wrote about a few posts ago. 😀 And although if I’d take it literally, there are some things I can’t agree with, generally, as a person with quite traditional views, I think it’s pretty true. I really like this song and it still makes me smile when I listen to it even though I know it since  a few years already.

It’s a pity there aren’t any English lyrics to it anywhere, I tried to translate it on my own, but realised I’d probably only make a bit of a hash of it, because there are lots of colloquialisms, metaphors and words that are more or less emotionally charged and I’m not sure of their adequate English equivalents, so it wouldn’t be as funny and natural. But still I hope you’ll enjoy this song.