Folk Combo is a musical duo based in Utrecht formed by David Alameda (violin) and Gijs Holleman (guitar). Our goal is to collect and perform a wide range of traditional music and dances in a humble attempt to give a new life to what commonly is called ´folklore´. Then this is what Folk Combo stands for; a combination of different musical flavours, places, colours, landscapes, people and cultures. Our approach to the folk music is quite simple, we give sound to books...
Since we met in the summer of 2011, we never thought that those nights of playing music books would lead to this moment, writing and sharing our story. At that time, working, stuyding and surviving, was not enough to suck out all the marrow of life. Playing music between work at our beloved ¨Graaf Floris¨ became the spark of our friendship, a mixture of Spanish ´tortilla´ and Dutch cheese. Bringing music books and scores from the local library gave us the chance to expand our knowledge of what playing music is about and at the same time we could travel an imaginary journey to distant places. Therefore, we might say we have been to Ireland, Scotland, France, Romania, Serbia, Bulgaria... But we never thought that we could create something serious out of those enjoyable music moments.
After three years, our 'life pulses' have reached the right tempo to experience this music journey for real. It's time to go to those places we recreate in our perfomance but have never been in reality. In the ´Balkan Adventures´ we finally have the chance to bring our interpretation of the Eastern European music to the cradle from where it once emerged. We like to see ourselves as a particular version of Don Quixote & Sancho Panza, moved by an inner drive that the locals might not guess.
Cordoba (Spain), 1982.
Since I was a child I was fascinated by nature, I wanted to know all the names of plants, animals, parts of the human boby; guess it was my way to explore the world. Then when I was a teenager I got enchanted by the sound of an instrument which, at the time, was just a beautiful box of high sounds. That discovery brought the music, which I guess was my way to get in touch with the world. Now my personal goal is to understand the connection of my two big passions: nature and music. I do believe folk music is a portrait of human experiences whose canvas is the landscape.
Tilburg (The Netherlands), 1991.
I cannot be sure what triggered my musical appetite but I believe a guy named 'Jimi Hendrix' had something to do with that... It was the sound of the blues; that cry of the soul. Since that moment I've been looking for those mystic elements in music, trying to understand what makes the sound so powerful and why they seem so in tune with my own personality. I keep finding this power in different musical genres, in different places and with different people. I am listening to the soundtrack of my life.