Friday, November 25, 2011

Bits and Pieces: More Folklore and Pop Culture From the Universe of YouTube

I love many kinds of music: world music, jazz, classical, pop. Anita Diament

Those of you who regularly read this blog know that I have a fascination with folklore and pop culture, especially that related to music from the Balkans. Today's post gives you both with music from Greece, Bulgaria and Macedonia.

The Muppets are extremely popular; a new Muppet movie was released recently. There was also The Muppet Show which was broadcast on TV in the 1970's and 80's. Everyone knows them from the show Sesame Street. The Muppets have even ventured into Greek folk music as you will see in the first video.

A friend sent me this excerpt from a 1978 episode of The Muppet Show. Miss Piggy sings Never on Sunday, accompanied by dancing pigs, a Greek folk ensemble, explosions, and plate breaking. This is the wildest crowd of Muppets that I've seen :)

There are bottles of Ouzo on the table, a liqueur similar to anisette; it has a strong licorice taste. It's the national drink of Greece.

Part of the Balkan cultural experience involves booze. This is a Bulgarian commmercial for rakia (brandy) with men in kilts performing a folk dance, accompanied by a Scottish pipe band (playing Bulgarian music). It's very cleverly done.

The final video in this post is a rap song with a Jamaican accent and a Romani beat. The performers are Ras Tweed from Jamaica and Esma Redzepova from Macedonia. This delightful and eclectic mix of folklore and pop culture is Raise Up Your Hands.

If you enjoyed this you may also like: Bulgarian Folklore and Pop Culture:

Folklore and Pop Culture (again!)Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Count Dracula (this one includes a vintage Sesame Street clip)

How Bulgarian Folk Music Induces Altered States

For more on The Muppets read:

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  1. Ha those muppets make me laugh! France has something simular to Ouzo called is very good.

    I absolutely LOVED "Raise up your Hands"! What a wonderful combination they had going! It made me want to get up and dance!

  2. Tracie, when I found "Raise Up Your Hands" on YouTube, I absolutely knew I had to write about it. This post was simply an excuse :)