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Artist
Celina Da Piedade
Influence: Mediterranean
Influence: Mediterranean
Genre: fado
BLOGS
 
Recalling Celina da Piedade's presence on the last edition of FMM- World Music Festival (Sines, Portugal) with the song "Calimero e a Pêra Verde". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_f_MDCzRGg   full concert https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wr_aLp9UzZw more
A world accordionist Celina da Piedade, 35, is an accordionist, singer and composer. The daughter of an Algarvean father, she started to study music at 5 years of age, and shortly afterwards gave public performances. In the year 2000 she started to play with Rodrigo Leão, who opened the doors to the world of music. She played and composed for various artists. Contrary to many artists, Piedade was in no hurry to release her first solo CD; something which she actually only did last year. The debut album «Em Casa» caught the attention of the world music magazine «fRoots» which dedicated a four page article to her called “Pride of Portugal”.   Bruno Filipe Pires, Edition 778 (23 May 2013) Somewhere in the audience at the Teatro Lethes, the young dramatist Luís Campião, will be sitting. Celina Piedade’s concert will serve as inspiration for a new play, to be produced in 2014 by the theatre group ACTA – A Companhia de Teatro do Algarve. “It is the first time I have ever been given this kind of challenge. I was very happy with the invitation. The idea is for it to be a work in progress. If in fact the dramatist goes ahead with the writing, I will then compose the music for the play”, Celina Piedade tells us. “My music has a very sunny and happy side to it. But it also has a melancholic one. This is normal. It is due to the inherent duality us human beings. Therefore, I think it would make it a comedy with a melodramatic side”, she says relating to the idea of the play. Maybe a little like the situation Portugal is going through. “Of course it affects me, it would be almost impossible not to feel the repercussions of the changes going on at the moment and the difficulties which are escalating. But I feel that the more difficult things get, the more we need to fight. We cannot lower our arms, we have to give a lot more of ourselves and reinvent the way we do things. Giving up is not a good path to take, neither is leaving nor dropping projects. We have to be resilient”, she ponders. Maybe because of this state of mind, Piedade is fully booked for the summer of 2013. “The CD has been very well received and I am very happy to be going on tour, at a time when all is so uncertain. The theatres have shown a lot of interest in me. Therefore, we are going a little against the tide”. At the same time there will be various shows from the Rodrigo Leão Cinema Ensemble. We asked her why it took so long for her to release the debut album. “I think for a musician this is a normal process. When I started to play with Rodrigo Leão, I never planned to make music my profession. I was studying Cultural Heritage in Évora, and I heard through some friends that he needed somebody to accompany him. The next thing I knew I was living the life of a musician. I was already on my way”, she says. That was back in the year 2000. Piedade has always composed original songs and music which made up part of the repertoire for the folk band Uxu Kalhus. However, when upon leaving that group because of other work commitments, “I left the outlet for my work”, she tells us. “I started to get the urge to do something alone. I started putting together all the things I had composed over the years, and my repertoire began to take shape. I felt it was the right time and that I was mature enough. Besides that, I knew all the right people who could help me” to produce «Em Casa». The result was a double CD, which takes us back to the traditional Portuguese dances, but also with a modern universal sound. “I had some difficulty in selecting the right material. Deep down, I wanted the CD to be a selection of all musical experiences and compositions”, she says. There was just one question which is not asked in her biography. What attracted her to the accordion? “It was the accumulation of many people’s desires. My father is a true Algarvean and loves the accordion. It all happened like this; we had a friend, when I was younger who 9 years older than me. This was in Setúbal where I grew up. She played the accordion and I admired her so much. According to my parents I asked her to teach me how to play. They were not expecting that. For my father it was a stroke of luck, now he did not have to try and convince me to learn how to play”, she tells us. “They bought me an accordion straight away and encouraged me to play”. Celina Piedade is a lover of the traditional Portuguese folk dancing and music. She has participated in many folk dances and folk music workshops. We asked her opinion on how she views Portuguese music today. “Portuguese music still has a lot to learn about itself. But I feel that we are on the right track and that things will change in the coming years, as regard to the relationship with the public and Portuguese music. It is heard more on the radios now, and people are going to concerts more frequently and are willing to buy tickets, when they can. I think things are changing”. She says. “I am not a nationalist. I believe music should be appreciated for its quality and not because of where it came from. But I am not bias either, I think that for a long time there was a certain bias as to what was made in Portugal”. “I think that there is a new generation of Portuguese musicians who are working together more and more. This brings great results. They mix those working with pop, rock and folk music, and that gives it more impact”. “I am not from the old school, but I am not from the new one either. When I started in 2000, the impression I got was that things were not like that. Groups were very tight and everybody did their own thing and there was no exchanging going on. Being closed up is a very Portuguese way of doing things and sometimes it can go against us. The newer generation get involved with each other more, without any diva tantrums”. This month, Celina da Piedade is brightening up the pages of the magazine «fRoors». The journalist Andrew Cronshaw spent some days in Portugal to find out “what is being done in the Folk music scene in Portugal. This music is alive, interesting and great ideas are surfacing, using the traditional instruments. I hope that people do not give up because of the difficulties they are facing. This is a new path which has yet to be trodden”, he concludes. more
Not realising this was a double album I put the second CD on first, and it's as impressive opening - deep hand-drumming and bell-chimes leading into a forming the sole accompaniment to Celina da Piedade's calm, (on this track) fado-like, vocal. This isn't in any way a fado album though; she's noted button-accordionist from southern Portugal, deeply involved in the folk songs and dance music of Alentejo, and her material ranges widely, vocally and instrumentally, through her own and traditional material.
Track two brings in her accordion in a light-touched waltz instrumental accompanied by piano and brushed drumkit. Another texture change into chuffy flutes, pandeireta and bombo in a pair of corridinhos with tongue-twisty group vocals as a trio with Gaiteiros de Lisboa'a Carlos Guerreiro and José Manuel David. Another elegant fado-style vocal accompanied by harp and rich dark cello, them over piano, limpid accordeon and unexpected, nicely-judged musical saw it's winning traditional slow-mazurka song A Lira, with intro by Kelly Thoma's Cretan Lyra. A couple of more accordeon-led instrumentals, a liltingly attractive song joined by soprano sax , and a rolling accordeon, drum and steam-organist instrumental to close.
There you go...this one works fine on its own and would have stood well as a single CD. But oh, tucked in the other flap, instead of the expected booklet, is the another CD, in fact CD1. With this being her first solo album after so much work as a founder-member of the band Uxu Kalhus asd with Rodrigo Leão and others, Celina had presumably built up more than a CD's-worth of stuff to record and get out there, and a large cast of people she wanted to play with. But CD1, again a mix of songs and her own tunes, is patchier than its companion, and the insensitive shythm section thumping in after a couple of verses of the opener isn't a promising start. It hat its moments though, particularly the string-quartet accompanied Toada, which combines a 19th Century song from Setúbal with instrumental sections using the 16th Century English melody Bony Sweet Robin. in fRoots mag more
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  email: celinapiedade@gmail.com Site: www.celinadapiedade.com   more
Influence
Mediterranean
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