Saturday, 29 May 2010

Czech Bluegrass Spring III: Luka nad Jihlavou, 10-11 Apr.

The illustrated diary kept by Lilly Pavlak continues:

The weekend 10-11 April I spent in a little town, Luka nad Jihlavou, where several times in the year an event called the Bluegrass Minifestival 'U Kuritku' takes place in a local restaurant. That night three bands were on the program.

The festival opened with the Giant Mountain’s Band [above], from South Bohemia. I saw them for the first time; through they suppose to exist for several years. The band has an American mandolin player and lead singer, Lucien Holmes, who moved to the Czech Republic in 2006. Before he used to play with the Highwater Bridge and Turtle Mountains Boys from North Dakota. I liked their performance very much.

Also the next young band, Jewelci [above] from southern Moravia, was new for me. They sang mostly in Czech and it was a pleasure to listen.

The highlight of the night everybody was waiting for was when the band Monogram [above] came on stage. They performed a couple of songs from their newest CD, Hit the road.

As surprise Ralph Schut showed up on stage with a bottle of champagne and as a godfather christened the new CD. Ralph is a young Dutch multi-instrumentalist, who moved to the Czech Republic eight years ago for the opportunity to play with young musicians on his own level. He plays with several bands now and already speaks Czech and Slovak well. His own main band is G-Runs ’n Roses (who were just named the European Bluegrass Band of the Year 2010 at the EWOB Festival in Holland). The official CD release party is supposed to be next Monday in the Gong Theatre in Prague.

I am sure a great jam session followed; but I had bad luck, picked up some strange virus, and got sick. My friends brought me to their house. Still ill, I went home by train on Sunday and had to stay in bed for several days. Anyway, the next Saturday I was fit and on the road again.

Monogram with the CD's 'godfather' and his girlfriend