DANIEL i THE KURAYBERS drøymer om lam frå Viksdalen
Fiolinisten i THE KURAYBERS, Daniel Lazar, hadde eigentleg ikkje noko val; han er 5. generasjons felespelar i familien, og hadde bestefaren som sin første musikklærar. Her fekk han kjærleiken til folkemusikken, medan kjærleiken til den klassiske kom seinare. Daniel Lazar elskar begge dele, men det var folkemusikken som førte han til Førde og Norge for 6 år sidan. Daniel har nemleg vore i Førde tidlegare, som deltakar i Førdefestivalen sitt talentprosjekt, og opphaldet i Sunnfjord sette sine spor - ikkje berre musikalsk. Gjennom dette intervjuet blir du litt betre kjend med Daniel Lazar, og laurdag 11. november høyrer du han og The Kuraybers på Larris Scene i Førde.
Daniel Lazar, could you present yourself as a musician? Your career so far.. etc. Dreams?
The whole story starts with the fact that I was surrounded with string instruments and music during my childhood. I am 5th generation of violinists in my family so it´s no surprise I started playing violin at age of 4, having my grandfather as my first violin teacher. He was folk violinist so I grew up listening and admiring beauty of folk music.
On the other hand there was this classical part that was also part of me. Long story short I am folk musician in a body of classical, and vice versa. I like to think that I used the best of worlds, technique and complexity from classical music and playfulness, improvisation and colors from folk.
Career so far?.. It´s hard to talk about that and be concise, I will mention few things I am proud of. I can say that I am proud of the fact that I managed to get highest awards in classical music as well as in Serbian and Romanian folk, something that no one achieved before me in my part of the world.
I am proud of collaboration with one of the most famous folk musicians in the world Gheorghe Zamfir… I am happy and proud that my career doesn´t have that boring and established path that very often musicians choose because it´s safe option. I am truly giving my best to think outside the box and constantly improve my skills. My dream would be to achieve that level of high comfort in improvisation and playing were I can do whatever I want with ease, like some of my musical heroes do (Stephane Grappelli, Renauld Garcia Fons, Simon Shaheen, Theodosii Spassov, Husnu Senlendirici etc.)
You participated in the Førde festival talent project. When was that?
I was part of Førde festival talent project in 2011, that year group was formed by young musicians from Norway, Serbia and Turkey. And I have to mention that it was lead by two amazing musicians Jovan Pavlovic and Steinar Ofsdal.
How was it, and did the talent project have any impact on your musical career today?
Well from perspective that I have today, I don´t think I was really aware about size of the festival and about great impact that Førdefestivalen has on folk and world music community. It's one really big hub for great musicians where you can see and hear all the musical colors from all over the world. Participation on the festival had one of the biggest impacts on my life and career due to a fact that after coming to Førde (which was my very first time visiting Norway), I decided to try to continue my studies at Norwegian Academy of Music which one year later happened since I was accepted on Master studies in classical music.
Well from perspective that I have today, I don´t think I was really aware about size of the festival and about great impact that Førdefestivalen has on folk and world music community.
I have to share one really funny fact that remained in my memory about my visit to Førde that year, we had organized by festival sightseeing tour of area around, on one of the visits I had one of the best lamb dishes in my life on local farm close to Førde. Ever since I was dreaming to come back to play at festival but also to try again that magnificent lamb…I think this time we will most defintely use opportunity to pay a visit to the farm again.
Yes, I do have contact with majority of musicians, I had luck that 2/3 of the Norwegian group from that year started their studies in the same time like me at academy in Oslo. For me that was really big thing, when you move to foreign country it´s nice to know that there are familiar faces around. Also I must say that getting to know musicians like Jovan and Steinar meant a lot at my musical beginnings in Norway. I received a lot of help from both of them.
About The Kuraybers: What kind of band are you? In your own words.
Seven guys with different life experience, with different cultural and educational background with energy on stage brighter than sun. Imagine this combination in one group: Bosnian soul, Serbian/Romanian virtouosity, Polish practicality, Spanish/Catal fire and passion, Norwegian calmness and coolness and Bulgarian rhytm. As someone used this phrase talking about us,”The Kuraybers are using Europe as their dance floor”.
Our music is a mirror of personalities of the group members, in general we are quite positive bunch of guys who like good humor and are not afraid of challenges of any kind. We like to use arrangements like a theater play, were you often have different carracters, different emotions. Because of that our music has big contrasts in between the parts.
If I have to sum it up, somehow I would probably say that this band is our excuse to smile and have fun. Audience usually gets that imediatelly when we walk on stage. On top of all that you add quite high level of musicianship and performing skills and you get “The Kuraybers”. ('a kurayber' means cool guy og bad ass, and is often used for a bohemian person).
And the music - how much is traditional music and how much is composed material?
In the beginning of the band it was mostly traditional material that we used, but of course in quite changed form with extra-added personal flavours due to a fact that everyone in the band has ability to improvise well. We use improvisation quite a lot in our playing. I could say it was 60% traditional and 40% original, but recently we started more and more to nurture our own musical language in different music styles and genres.
We come from different backgrounds so whenever we get original material from any of the band members we are often surprised to hear how differently we comprehend music, which in our case is not an obstacle, on contrary that´s what makes us “The Kuraybers”. It´s diversity that we embrace and offer to the audience.
How does the creative process in The Kuraybers work?
This question is a bit complicated to explain because there is no rule how we create. But in more situations it´s with the whole group together, in our band democracy is quite important. We are aware of musical capacities that we have, so when we sit and work on new tune we encourage others to express their feelings and ideas regarding what should be done, in the end you have at least 7 choices to choose from. The best idea wins, there are no hard feelings between us cause we always think in favor of music.
Where do you love to play the most? (what kind of venues.. etc.)
We´ve played in big venues like Oslo konserthus and small pubs in small places…. We have experienced different conditions, that´s why I think right question is what kind of audience we love?
We love audience that is open minded and ready to experience something different and we love audience that is ready to receive and send back positive energy. Even if that´s not the case sometimes, usually we are quite persuasive and we get people in proper mood after couple of tunes.
Any plans for the future? CDs, concerts, projects...
Exactly this days we decided that it´s about time to put our ideas in form of a new album. So spring 2018 will be somewhat period when we planned to enter the studio.
Regarding projects and concerts there are some nice things happening. Last year was very exciting for us, we got to collaborate for the first time with a vocalist (with two more specific) We had extreme pleasure and luck to establish collaboration with two great singing stars, we had a blast on stage in Bergen with Norwegian jazz singer Silje Nergaard and two successful performances with Serbian pop diva Jelena Tomasevic.
Two collaborations that on the paper shouldn´t work because of difference in style and expression, but in reality it turned out to be extremely good combination and despite of all the challenges we had, it was great fun collaborating with them. We are looking forward to expand those collaborations with concerts and possibly with some recordings of original tunes for our album.