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10 Nov 2016

Ossian “ Ossian” 1975 Polish progressive folk, avant-folk, free-folk

Ossian “ Ossian” 1975 Polish progressive folk, avant-folk, free-folk 
1st album by the great Polish Prog group Ossian (a.k.a. Osjan), which was one of the first East European groups to embrace World Music influences and incorporate them into their highly improvised music. Founded in 1971 by multi-instrumentalists Jacek Ostaszewski (flutes and percussion) and Tomasz Holuj (tabla and percussion), the band was later expanded to include Milo Kurtis (trombita and percussion, who is of Greek origin), creating some of the most adventurous and mind-blowing music, which of course at the time was truly pioneering and eons before its time. Later incarnations of the group were further expended to include additional musicians. The group’s music consists of long (usually well over 10 minutes) contemplative and largely improvised pieces, performed solely on acoustic instruments. Deeply emotional and drawing its inspiration from the Far East, Middle East, India and Polish Folklore, this is definitely one of the most wonderfully strange musical experiences one can get exposed to. This debut album was recorded before Kurtis joined the band and features guitarist Marek Jackowski. By the time of this recording the group had already years of experience playing together live, which is apparent from the incredible level of the interplay between the musicians. A must to all brave-hearted music lovers! …. by…Jazzis ….. 

The origins of Osjan (the name derives from a fictional character from a poem by Bolesław Leśmian. The musicians slighly changed spelling to ‘Ossian’ but when they later found out there was a Scottish band of the same name then they returned to the original spelling) date early 70s when two former members of ANAWA (a band mostly known from playing with Marek Grechuta), namely Jacek Ostaszewski and Marek Jackowski, met with Tomasz Ho³uj. At the beginning the band was highly influenced by indian music. You could also trace some avant-garde and folk touch. In 1975 Marek Jackowski abandoned the band in order to form a rock band Maanam with a percussionist Milo Kurtis who was later invited by the remaining members of Ossian to work for the band. 
In 30 years time span the lineup and instrumentarium frequently changed. The band also collaborated with many guest musicians like prominent polish jazzmen Tomasz Stañko and Pawe³ Jastrzêbski, Apostolis Anthimos from SBB, legendary trumpeter Don Cherry, a shaman from the Cheronee tribe and others. 
Osjan’s music is combined of elements of musical cultures from many parts of the world such as aforementioned indian music, african, arabia, far east and south american indian folklore which meet with jazz and classical music influences. 
But the factor that occupies the central place in Osjan’s music is rhythm - the most primordial and present in every musical culture element. 
Ossian is regarded the pioneer of so called world music in Poland but in reality the music of Osjan doesn’t explore nor utilise any ethnicality. It simply stands beyond any ethnicality, stylistics or genre affinity because the goal of all Osjan’s searches were always the most basic and universal elements of music. 

Current lineup (January, 2007): Jacek Ostaszewski (flutes, vocals), Wojciech Waglewski (guitar, vocals), Rados³aw Nowakowski (drums: conga, bata), Milo Kurtis - (drums, Jew’s-harps, vocalisations). ….. 

Line-up / Musicians 

Jacek Ostaszewski - flute, dholak 
Marek Jackowski - guitars, drum 
Tomasz Hołuj - tabla, gongs, percussions 

A1 Cicho, Cicho Przemawia. Drzewa Słuchają… Trawy…
A2 Na Wiosnę, Setki Kwiatów, W Jesieni Księżyc Żniwny, W Lecie Powiew Rzeźwiący, W Zimie Śnieg Będzie Ci Towarzyszył. Gdy Rzeczy Bezużyteczne Nie Plączą Się W Twoim Umyśle, Każda Pora Roku Jest Dla Ciebie Dobra.
A3 Wieczna Pielgrzymka
B1 Bębny
B2 Księga Deszczu VI
B3 Mozolnie Dźwiga Się W Górę Katedra Wiosny

johnkatsmc5, welcome music..