Mr Brunswick does Brunswick Music Festival – Day 2


March 8th

Sunday was exactly how I want every day at the Brunswick Music Festival to be.

My day began at 1pm, at Town Hall, where I caught a couple of brews and Coco De Mer’s ‘Sounds of the Seychelles’ gig. Coco De Mer are an ensemble of awesomeness. Stella Savy, their choir director, led the Boite’s Mini Millennium Choir as they sang songs that, to my understanding, are composed by Savy herself. The music centred around tales and themes that depict Seychellois creole culture and is as interesting as it is entertaining but… If you’ve seen their performance before then you probably know what’s coming next… Grace Barbé.

Barbé’s performance was truly intoxicating and she was what made that gig one of the more memorable. The next time she’s in Melbourne, please, do yourself a favour and see her. To describe her with words is to her an injustice.

I swung passed home, munched through lunch then ducked over to Cross Street Hall. This built for audio quality establishment needs discovering. Tucked away behind Brunswick East’s Lygon St., the Cross Street Hall is run by the Moreland City Band’s artists, contributors and participants. They have already played gigs and continue to play gigs throughout Brunswick Music Festival’s two weeks. Check them out. Their environment’s relaxed and welcoming. And, of course, the music is quality so head up to Cross St. when you get a chance… plus, their drinks are cheap! I couldn’t stay long though, I had made plans to meet my parents back at Town Hall, they were interested in coming along to ‘Festa di Piazza’.

I was finishing a beer when they arrived, which became the topic of conversation, of course. I told them that drinking was mandatory. My mother didn’t like that. I had told them that there would be food served so they hadn’t had lunch… unfortunately, the only food they had on offer was what I can only describe as zippuli with a cheese and tomato filling. They were okay, I guess, but they definitely wouldn’t suffice for hungry Italians. The gig was entertaining though.

We watched all of the performances and I was appreciative of their authenticity. We really enjoyed ourselves, they were all genuinely entertaining (which, as you can probably tell, surprised me because, truth be told, most Australian Italian acts are usually subpar). There was dancing, patrons sang along to the songs that they were familiar with and everyone seemed to be smiling. Although all the acts were exceptional, Santa Taranta stood out.

Santa Taranta are, soundwise, one of the most traditionally southern Italian acts I’ve had the chance to catch in person. Their music is, basically, southern Italy. The lyrics are delivered in dialects native to Puglia and Basilicata. If you’re a fan of World Music, Italian culture, or culture in general, check these dudes out.

By the time the night concluded, my father and I had had enough beer (my mother doesn’t really drink) and we were all hungry. We decided on eating at the Moreland Hotel. My mother had the calamari, my father and I tore through chicken parmas and a couple of drinks. We were all content with our outing and, once we had food in our bellies, the night felt complete.

R.P.G is a Brunswick local with a passion for cartoons, comedy and culture. His drinks of preference are Balieys and whichever cider is currently cheapest. In his downtime he watches Doctor Who with his mother. He likes salads. Don’t judge him.

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