Lubos Malina. Photo © Ruth Ellen Gruber
An article by Ginanne Brownell about Druha Trava, published March 8, 2013, notes my role in the band‘s 2011 CD “Shuttle to Bethlehem”. From her interview with Lubos Malina:
Tell me about “Shuttle to Bethlehem.” Why did you decide to finally record in English?
We had tried a few times, we recorded three English-language albums but none of them had good translation of Robert’s original stuff. And it was the idea of Ruth Ellen Gruber [an American journalist based in Italy]. She came and pushed us to do this. She asked someone to translate the songs word by word and then she re-wrote it to a singing poetic way and then they finished it with Robert. So they both agreed on final versions of the songs and both were happy. On previous records, Robert translated himself and got some help but they had no sense for the poetics.
Do you feel like it works with English language audiences?
We have only been to the US once since we recorded it. When we sang in Czech, no one could understand but now they get it all, music, words and meanings. So I guess they should appreciate more and enjoy it more. And seems like it works.
Czech Radio’s English language service recently interview me, along with banjoist-multi-instrumentalist Lubos Malina, about the great “Czechgrass” band Druha Trava’s new double live CD.
You can access the interview by CLICKING HERE — and you can either stream the half hour interview or download it as an mp3.
We talk about the new CD set — one CD was recorded during the annual summer festival in the beautiful town of Telc, and the other is a compilation of performances last year with guests Peter Rowan, Charlie McCoy and Katia Garcia.
We also spoke about my role in DT’s previous CD, Shuttle to Bethlehem, which mainly features my English language translations of DT singer-songwriter-frontman Robert Krestan’s songs.
After the interview, Lubos and I stopped to visit the new museum devoted to pioneering Czech animator Karel Zeman, en route to a concert by Kris Kristofferson.
Photo © Ruth Ellen Gruber