Now officially known as “The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia,” the country appears in its Flickr slideshow to be one of great natural beauty with sleepy, centuries-old villages dotting its mountainous landscape.Â At the same time, Lonely Planet’s Macedonia page describes the nation as both embracing its timelessness and eagerly engaging the modern age:Â “Simultaneously ancient and brand new, itâ€™s struggling to find its place in the postcommunist world….Macedonia still has an air of mystery to it.”
— Macedonia is home to enthusiastic lyric, epic and circle dance (“oro”) songs, such as this. Macedonia is on board with the Balkan Brass revival; the Kocani Orkestar, seen here performing “Siki Siki Baba,” which we sing in class, is one of the best brass bands around. (“Siki Siki Baba” is originally a Turkish song, but it worked its way to Macedonia and now is very much Balkan Brass.) Macedonia also boasts music written in the old urban folk style known as “Calgija.” Macedonia is also the country of origin of another of our in-class favorites: “Sto Mi E Milo.”
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