Kairos Collective | Erato (expected October 2022)
This album, my third, is dedicated to the source of music, an idea that was triggered by a thought-provoking seminar given by master musician and composer Ross Daly (1952) entitled ‘Where does this music come from?’ This question could of course be, and usually is, a simple enquiry about the geographic origin of an unknown piece of traditional music. It can however also be a deeper, more challenging one, expecially for composers. Music seems to originate from your mind, and with the right skills and mindset you can make it come out. But how did it get inside your head in the first place? Why does it come out the way it does? How do you decide that a piece is finished? Why does it sometimes feel like pieces are writing themselves and that you are merely there to assist? Neuroscience, sociology, geography and history may give us some clues, but I prefer to think that these questions have no meaningful, complete answers and maintain my sense of wonder when approaching them.
Michiel van der Meulen
Heraklion, May 2022
Tracks / total playing time ….
- Crimson / Nihâvend saz semâî
- Blackcap / Albanian folk melody
- Kilim / Janino
- Meltem / Hüseynî karşılama
- Erato / Acem-Bûselik medhal
- Muhayyer taksîm / Improvisation on the kanun
- Sapor / Muhayyer peşrev
- Manastırka / Poustséno / Pušteno
- Phoenix / Kürdî devr-i hindî
- Şive-nüma taksîm / Improvisation on the violin
- Erebos / Şive-nüma peşrev
- The Rose and the Nightingale / Phrygian phantasy
- Romanza / Acem Aşîrân saz semâî
- Aj Sarajevo / Nihâvend yürük semâî / Bojerka
Michiel van der Meulen – composition [1, 3-5, 7-9, 11-14], arrangement, tambura [2-4, 8], double bass 
Harris Lambrakis – ney [1, 2, 7-9, 11-13]
Giorgos Papaioannou – violin [1, 2, 7, 9, 10-13]
Nikos Papaioannou – cello [1, 2, 7, 9, 11-13]
Manolis Kanakakis – kanun [1, 2, 6, 7, 9, 11-13]
Taxiarchis Georgoulis – oud [1, 2, 7, 9, 11-13]
Marijia Katsouna – bendir [1, 2, 7, 11, 13], tombak 
Michalis Kouloumis – violin [3, 4, 8]
Tracks 1, 3-5, 7-9 and 11-14 have been composed by Michiel van der Meulen. Track 2 is an arrangement of an Albanian folk melody. Tracks 6 and 10 are improvisations. Track 9 was recorded by Nikos Kollias at Antart Studios (Athens, Greece) on June 22, 2020; 3, 4 and 8 by Udo Pannekeet at Wedgeview Studios (Woerdense Verlaat, Netherlands) on November 21, 2020; 14 in the same studio on July 21, 2021; 5 by Vangelis Apostolou at Studio Vasmaris (Heraklion, Greece) on August 27, 2021; and 1, 2, 7, the finale of 9, and 10-13 by Nikos Kollias at Antart Studios (Athens, Greece) on May 22-24, 2022. A few corrective overdubs were recorded by Cengiz Arslanpay at his home studio (Utrecht, Netherlands) on June 26, 2022, and Nikos Paraoulakis at Studio K65 (Athens, Greece) on July 16, 2022. The album was mixed and mastered by Vangelis Apostolou at Studio Vasmaris between May 26 and September 25, 2022.
Many thanks are due to: Ross Daly and Labyrinth Musical Workshop for guidance and inspiration • The musicians and studio staff for the great time we spent and the great job they did • Evgenios Voulgaris for inspiring the arrangement of Romanza and his advice on the essence of a big sound • Sergios Voulgaris for advice on devr-i kebîr rhythmic patterns for bendir • Cengiz Arslanpay for explaining metaphors in Ottoman poetry • Pavlos Spyropoulos for lending us his double bass • Remco Busink for modifying our tambura • Sven van der Gijp for extending Kairos Collective to the Netherlands • The Theocharopoulou-Orfanidis and Papaioannou families for hospitality during the Greek recording sessions and friendship in general • My family and inlaws for their generous support of the project • Dominy Clements for proofreading the liner notes • Martine van der Meulen for love and understanding – this album is, as always and more than ever, for you.
TouMilou Records #6 / EAN 8714835139188
© 2022 M.J. van der Meulen/TouMilou
Get the album (…soon)
- The digital album will be available at Bandcamp
- Erato will be made available through streaming platforms
- The album will be available on a limited-edition CD, pre-orders can be made using the contact form
Bandcamp is an online platform that allows you to buy music directly from the people who make it. Unlike other channels, most revenue goes to the makers. Streaming platforms are a great gateway to music, but you must bear in mind that only massive numbers of plays will generate a significant income. Independent artists need independent listeners!
Album art (1000 x 1000 px jpg)
About the album artwork
Sir Edward John Poynter (Paris, 20 March 1836 – London, 26 July 1919), was an English painter and draughtsman with a long and distinguished career that earned him a knighthood and an honorary Cambridge degree in 1898, and a baronetcy in 1902. His ‘Erato, Muse of Poetry’ (1870, watercolour on paper, 47 x 33 cm) is more chaste and delicate than the generally voluptuous, exalted, Baroque to Romantic-era depictions. Apart from the fact that she is winged, Poynter’s Erato is a mythologically faithfull represention of the muse of love poetry, which I chose because of the beauty of the eyes. The artwork of the scores book is from Nederlandsche Vogelen (‘Dutch Birds’) by Cornelis Nozeman and Christiaan Sepp, the monumental, beautifully illustrated, five-part first Dutch avifauna, which appeared between 1770 and 1829.