Archive for February, 2018

Anxo Lorenzo: A bruxa

February 24, 2018

Session coming up on Wednesday! Here is a tune we play in every session, A bruxa, played by Anxo Lorenzo, who may be coming our way soon …









February session

February 21, 2018

The February edition of our Galician session / foliada is coming up in a week, on Wed, 28.2., starting from 8:30pm, at the James Street Tavern as usual.

Last time, we had lots of instruments but no gaita, as David had joined Luar na Lubre on their trip to the Celtic Connections festival. For the eighth session in the new sequence, we’re now hoping to lure David back to our smaller venue. There will also be singing and percussions from the Oxford Pandeireteiras, and there may even be a bit of floor space available for dancing. Sheet music will be provided for anybody who brings an instrument and wants to join in. A bag of miscellaneous percussion instruments is also available if you would like to rattle along with the rhythms. Note that the session will close before 11:30 with the traditional anthem of “Fisterra”, so if you don’t have to leave earlier, it would be nice if you could stay for that.

For further info about the sessions and sharing audio and video recordings of the tunes we play, subscribe to this blog or join the Facebook group. There is also a mailing list for email reminders sent a week before the sessions.

NB David will also host another Galician session in London soon, happening on Wed 21.3. at La Bodega Restaurant, off Portobello Road, I will make a separate announcement for that a bit closer to the date.


(The picture is from the Cantigas de Santa Maria, via wikipedia:ía )

News from the Middle Ages

February 19, 2018

In the rapidly growing series about the exciting things that Oxford folkies do when they are not folking around, here’s a new book from Jane, who plays the harp at the Galician sessions (and also in other sessions and with the band Skeleton Crew). It’s an anthology of texts written in the medieval French used in the British Isles post 1066 (here referred to as Anglo-Norman, which confused me at first, but it is definitely French). The texts look reasonably accessible at first glance, but there are also translations and eplanations provided, so this could be fun:

An Anglo-Norman Reader

Jane Bliss

Open Book publishing, 2018

Order info and free PDF download.





February 17, 2018

here’s a Galician fiddle tune for our fiddlers:


brincadeira in Galician and Portuguese means joke, banter, frolic etc.


Costa da morte

February 12, 2018

movie night this week – announcement from the Galician Studies Centre:

[GAL] Aquí chega a terceira proxección do Ciclo de Cinema Galego en Oxford! Xunto co GFF-Galician Film Forum de Londres, temos o pracer de acoller unha das máis exquisitas mostras das novas narrativas do panorama audiovisual galego coa poética “Costa da morte”, de Lois Patiño (2013).
Vindeiro xoves 15 de febreiro ás 17.15h., Main Hall da Taylor Institution Library. Entradas de balde no Eventbrite.

[ENG] Here comes the third screening of the Galician Film Series in Oxford, jointly with the Galician Film Forum (GFF)-London. We are delighted to present one of finest examples of the new narratives in the contemporary Galician cinema, the poetical ‘Coast of Death’ (2013), by Lois Patiño.
15th February, 5.15 pm at the Main Hall, Taylor Institution Library.
Screening in Galician with English subtitles. Free Registration at Eventbrite:…


costa da morte





Foliada plus/minus caffeine

February 11, 2018

This morning, Radio Galega broadcast a short report about the Caerdydd Galician session, available as podcast now, starting at 2:00 mins with A bruxa. Loving Gerardo’s very helpful explanation of the concept of a folk session to the Galician audience: a session is a decaffeinated foliada.

I like to think though, that here at the Oxford foliada / session we are putting the caffeine back in …

A pandeireteira’s day job

February 6, 2018

If you’ve ever wondered what the Oxford Pandeireteiras do when they’re not rattling tambourines, here’s one answer. Laura listed on Facebook the job title “Fisheries analyst at Satellite Applications Catapult” which I found intriguing so I asked her about it and the answers led to the feature that is out this week:

Eyes on our planet

Current Biology Volume 28, Issue 3, pR89–R92, 5 February 2018

Restricted access to full text and PDF download
(will become open access one year after publication)

Magic link for free access
(first seven weeks only)

Laura Fontán Bouzas, whose work is the nucleus from which this feature grew …

Global sounds

February 3, 2018

I have an essay from 2009 by Jose Calmeiro about how Galician culture emerged from its peripheral position to become a global phenomenon – looking for an online version of this I discovered that the author now has a whole book out on the topic:

Peripheral visions / global sounds: From Galicia to the world. Liverpool University Press 2017.

The last chapter is called: ‘Bagpipes, Bouzoukis and Bodhráns: The Reinvention of Galician Folk Music’ – that sounds promising (an earlier version of this chapter was also published in A Companion to Galician Culture in 2014).

I’ll see if I can get hold of a copy (it’s quite expensive, so I’ll try the libraries first).

A lengthy review is here.


Galician audio/visual culture has experienced an unprecedented period of growth following the process of political and cultural devolution in post-Franco Spain. This creative explosion has occurred in a productive dialogue with global currents and with considerable projection beyond the geopolitical boundaries of the nation and the state, but these seismic changes are only beginning to be the subject of attention   of cultural and media studies. This book examines contemporary audio/visual production in Galicia as privileged channels through which modern Galician cultural identities have been imagined, constructed and consumed, both at home and abroad. The cultural redefinition of Galicia in the global age is explored through different media texts (popular music, cinema, video) which cross established boundaries and deterritorialise new border zones where tradition and modernity dissolve, generating creative tensions between the urban and the rural, the local and the global, the real and the imagined. The book aims for the deperipheralization and deterritorialization of the Galician cultural  map by overcoming long-established hegemonic exclusions, whether based on language, discipline, genre, gender, origins, or territorial demarcation, while aiming to disjoint the center/periphery dichotomy that has relegated Galician culture to the margins. In essence, it is an attempt to resituate Galicia and Galician studies out of the periphery and open them to the world.,jose-colmeiro-9781786940308

galician culture







February 1, 2018

On Monday 12.2., from 19:00-21:00h there will be a Spoons workshop organised by and for the Oxford Pandeireteiras, but open to all.

The workshop is run by Jo May, who has also run similar events at the Folk Weekend Oxford. It will be at the East Oxford Community Centre (44 Princes Street, OX4 1DD, corner with Cowley Rd). Advance tickets (£10) available from EventBrite.

NB: The monthly French/Breton session will be happening the same evening at the James Street Tavern (starting 20:30h), just across the road , so if anybody wants to go for a beer after the workshop and/or wants to try out their new percussion skills that would be a good place to go. A few people you know from the Galician sessions will also be playing there …