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Jeff Gburek - "Vigilance Suite I & II" 2CD

Regular price $18.00

(Ramble Records)

Australian import, limited edition 2CD set in color gatefold sleeve with liner notes by Jeff Grubek.

Music played privately at home doesn't count as much as humanitarian aid, on the ground, where events are scattering lives -- but making these tracks was one of the ways I began to weather the storm, when one of my homelands went under military siege.

It was over a century ago my ancestors on my mother's side left regions within and near Ukraine to come to the USA, perhaps as refugees of some similar conflict. Vigilance Suites were recorded on February 24, 25 and February 28 and March 1, 2022. I used a slightly drop-tuned acoustic guitar in open D tuning, zither, e-bow various preparations over the course of time to represent shifts of mood and transformations of mind.

The colorful rag doll depicted on the CD disc is called a Motanka. I bought it in a market in Lviv, Ukraine in 2015. It reminded me of Hopi Kachinas, Voodoo figurines and Roma magic-spell fetishes. Motanki are hand-made, using scraps of cloth or discarded clothing of relatives.The use of needles, scissors or machines, is forbidden. Motanka is a composition of energy and substances inside can be coins, herbs, grain, intentionally charged. They are house-guardians and they represent the healing properties of plants, seasonal and nature spirits. The cross on the face represents the sun. Motanki links us back to the ancient Pagan and animist cultures of the people who live in the Transcarpathian regions.The Motanka set upon the background of the traditional pattern of head scarf from Ukraine represents the folk culture of the people.

This music, born out of the time of reflection, waiting for news, perhaps carries the hopes, fears, perhaps within its imagery some of the brokenness being transmuted into sound, as struggling distant friends endure these trials, these ups and downs, the outrage and the sense of rebound, the sense of loss, displacement, bewilderment.