Alan Stivell (born the January 6th 1944 with Riom) is a Auteur-compositeur-interprète and Breton Musicien , of French citizenship , Celtic expression to which are added the French, the English and other languages. It is at the base of the rebirth of the Celtic Harpe and the modern Breton music. Its music is very open on the world, the Celtie and is based on original musical forms. Its musical work doubles of a combat for the recognition of the Celtic culture and a greater fraternity between the human ones.
Its personality and its work played a leading role in the popularization of the Celtic music in Brittany and in the world. This first role is initially chronological: at its beginnings, there is one Breton singer, Glenmor , which sings its own compositions. On the contrary, Alan Stivell goes initially especially celebrates for its work on the traditional repertory, even if its work is upon the departure extraordinarily multiple in the single variety of its arrangements but also of its creations; to that was added a capacity to communicate its passion, thanks to which it caused the vocation (direct or indirect) of the current Breton artists (except Gilles Servat, rather heir to Glenmor). Its music became universal by its notoriety, but also by its modernity and its influences most eclectic. Since the beginning, it does not have of cease to occur on scene everywhere in the world and to propose an original discography.
Of its true name Alan Cochevelou , it is resulting from the Breton emigration as about half of the Breton ones: its family is originating in Gourin and Pontivy in the Morbihan, in Brittany, but it was born with Riom (Département of the Puy-de-Dôme in the area Auvergne, in France), where it lived a few months before passing its youth to Paris, except its frequent stays in Brittany. Its pseudonym Stivell means in Breton “spouting spring”; it derives from one of the etymologies of its name ( kozh stivelloù , old sources).
Formation and beginningsThe first part of its life proceeds with Paris. It begins the training from the piano at age the five years and its vocation comes from a dream of his/her father Georges Cochevelou: the manufacture of a Celtic Toothing-stone, “Telenn Gentañ” ( telenn means “toothing-stone” in Breton). The Celtic toothing-stone is an instrument forgotten with the Moyen-âge, at the time where the Duché of Brittany loses its independence and is incorporated in the kingdom of France. The prototype recreated by his/her father encourages it to take courses of toothing-stone; it profits from the teaching of the famous concert performer Denise Mégevand (1917 - 2004). The arrangements of traditional topics Celtic, written by its professor and his father, determine at his place a passion for the Celtie and the Brittany, passion which never attenuated.
In 1953, it occurs with its toothing-stone, with the Maison from Brittany to Paris and begins its training of the Breton language, it also is interested in the Welsh, the Gaélique and the Celtic Mythologie. It also occurs with UNESCO and in the cathedral of Vannes. The following year, it enters to the Bagad Bleimor and begins the study of the bombards. It continues to propagate the Celtic Harpe in the Parisian, Irish and Scottish mediums Breton by already of rather many recitals, although its secondary studies do not allow him a professional statute. In 1957, it makes even the first part of Line Renaud with the Olympia. Then, after having written the first notes of a " symphony celtique" it begins with the Bagad Bleimor the study of the Cornemuse or Binioù arm or GDP-veur. In 1959, it records its first 45 turns ( Musique Gaelic ). It becomes PEN-To sound bagad Bleimor at the beginning of the Années 1960, becomes champion of Brittany as bell ringer in couple and within the bagad. Then in 1963, it records an instrumental first 33 turns solo Telenn geltiek - Toothing-stone Celtic . In 1966, it takes again its scenic activity (in particular in the American Center of Paris), but this time as singer; its incipient notoriety is worth to him to be invited in the radios. As of 1967, it signs an exclusive contract with Philips-Fontana (Universal). The same year, it records the part “grips” on the disc of Graeme Allwright “ Joue, plays, plays ”. It turns already much, especially in solo, but also in company of others accustomed of American Center of Paris. It is at that time that it takes the name of Alan Stivell . The following year 1968, it records two individual; he sings and plays (inter alia services, one with the Sorbonne in strike) in first part of the Moody Blues in Queen Elisabeth Hall with London. In 1970, it records the album Reflets , after individual a Brocéliande - Its rear chistr which marks the kickoff of a phenomenon which will revolutionize Brittany and will drain crowd with the six corners of the Hexagon, before those of Europe, America and Australia.
Decade 1970In 1972, leaves an album marking to the eloquent title: Rebirth of the Celtic toothing-stone , which is greeted by the price of the Académie Charles-Cross-country race and will become a disc worship a little everywhere (in particular in the USA). The February 28th of this same year, it gives a concert to the Olympia accompanied in particular by the guitarist daN Ar Braz. The success in this concert is amplified by a radiophonic retransmission and a recording which is sold with 1.500.000 specimens. Stivell does the “one” of musical magazines, its electric Breton music (the Celtic pop ) becomes with the mode. Regard of its compatriots, it reaches the international recognition. Its success causes followers, not only by redynamisant the traditional music but still by supporting the emergence of new musicians and song writers and performers.
1973 confirms the previous year: after a three weeks passage to Bobino, it leaves a new album, Dirt tracks , greeted by the critic (the British magazine Melody Maker indicates it disc of the year) whose business success makes very quickly a gold disc of it. The scenic activity continues so much in France (Bobino, hexagonal round) that with international (Canada, the United Kingdom).
After the exit, the following year, album E Langonned (in Langonnet) and a round in North America, it produces in 1975 E Dulenn ( has Dublin ) an album live recorded with the Stadium National of Dublin. The piece Délivrance is openly militant, it is the claim of the Celtic cultures and the assertion of the Celtie like ground of crossing. The Sport hall of Paris, full at short-nap cloth-edge, accommodates it during ten days with same public success.
In 1976, it records Trema' N Inis (towards the island), a homage to his/her father the inventor of the new Celtic toothing-stone, recently deceased. Will follow the following years the discs Raok Dilestra - Before Accosting and Dewezh 'Barzh 'Gêr ( one day at the house ). It is at that time that daN Ar Braz begins its career solo which will carry out it in the Années 1990 to the adventure of the Héritage of the Celts .
Always in 1976, Daniel Chatelain and Pierre Tafini, in Which is what makes run the separatists? (Éditions Stock) notes that “Stivell included/understood by listening to the militant singers that the music links, the words also divide uses it less texts possible, if not drowned in the orchestration and still or with the exclusive use of only Breton-speaking are ultra-symbolic systems”. It is to a little quickly forget texts like Délivrance (E Dulenn) , with the contents explicitly separatist, and more recently Armoricaine (Continuation) where it is refers to the Breton nation (“the world does not exist without you”).
In 1977, it makes a triumphal round in Australia, where the sport halls are roofs; all youth, mainly coed, the plebiscite in all the country.
In 1979, it leaves Tro Ar Bed (International Turn), a disc in concert. The same year, it records and leaves the Celtic Symphonie - Shooting Na nOg (in the Irish Celtic Mythologie, Tir Na nOg it is the “Earth of the Young people”, one of the names of the Other World , the Sidh). This work marks the beginning of a well today established current, the cross-country race-over , which mixes the Celtic music with the symphonic music, the rock'n'roll, with the pop one, with the jazz-rock'n'roll and the ethnic influences most various. It translates its texts into Tibetan, algonquin, Sanscrit, Berbère, Irish and sings them in these languages, because for him this Celtic symphony is a universal symphony.
Decade 1980During the Years 1980, the career of Stivell is less with the front of the scene in the Hexagon. But, contrary to other artists, it continues to turn regularly, in particular in Germany, with the the United States, in Italy. In this country (as in Australia), its concerts reach gigantic proportions: 14.000 spectators with Milan, 12.000 with Rome.
Three discs only will be recorded for this period.
In 1981, Ground of Alive the is an album with sonorities later more Rock, whereas Légende , left two years, mark an evolution towards electronics and the New-Old . It turns much in North America, where success is always with go.
1985 the album Toothing-stone of the New Age , instrumental disc where it uses only its toothings-stone, of which its new electroacoustic prototypes and electric (Alan Stivell always was with the avant-garde of the design of new types of toothing-stone ).
Decade 1990In 1991, Stivell composes 16 titles relating to the Légende arthurienne with the album The Mist Of Avalon , an evocation of the main characters the such King Arthur, the Fée Morgane, the Reine Guenièvre, Taliesin and legends Celtic. At this time, the public starts with réintéresser with the Celtic music.
In 1993, rather than to publish any compilation, it invites artists of reputation to revisit some of its titles. One finds his accomplice daN Ar Braz, but also of the singers come from other horizons: Kate Bush, Shane MacGowan, Laurent Voulzy, Gillan O' Donovan, Yann-Fañch Kemener, Gilles Servat, James Wood, Doudou diaye Rose, Robert Gall, Davy Spillane, and others. This meeting ensures the success of the disc which is sold with 300.000 specimens. The advertizing work of its publisher Keltia III (distributed then by Dreyfus Discs), in particular a publicity on television channel TF1, takes part in the revival of the Celtic music in the Breton and hexagonal general public.
The same year, daN Ar Braz and Jacques Bernard federate many artists around the project of the Héritage of the Celts which has as an ambition to have the richness of the Celtic music in all its diversity. At the time of the Festival of Cornwall, Alan Stivell takes part in the baptism of this adventure which will confirm the second wave of popularity of the Celtic music. It receives in December 1993 the title of Breton of the year by the monthly magazine armor magazine.
In 1994, Stivell receives the collar of the Ordre of Hermine to Vannes, which rewards the personalities which work for the radiation of Brittany.
One year later, it is the exit of Brian Boru of the name of the king d' Irlande which reigned at the 11th century, in which it includes and arranges traditional musical topics, with a resolutely modern tone, with, for the first time, a title inspired of the Hip hop. Are also include personal compositions and texts of which Parlament Lament dedicated to the Parlement of Brittany to Rennes, burned the February 4th 1994.
In 1998, always anxious to place footbridges between the cultures and the musics, it leaves 1 Douar (“1 Ground”) on which it invited Youssou Dour, Khaled, Jim Kerr (of the group Simple Minds), John Cale, Paddy Moloney (Chieftains), and other artists.
The March 16th 1999, it is one of the heads of poster in a great concert to the Palais Omnisport of Paris Bercy (POPB) where share also the Heritage of the Celts takes. The double-album Bretagnes in Bercy brings together the largest musicians who interpret, inter alia, 7 titles of Alan Stivell.
Decade 2000Back to Breizh : for the year 2000, Alan Stivell sticks in personal compositions to point out what Brittany must bring above all with the new century, its identity and a return to a more concrete Brittany (cf " Those which sow the mort").
In 2002, Beyond the words is an instrumental work where its toothings-stone are queens. It is Stivell harpor which still shows an new approach, where marry very pure acoustic sonorities with the electronic creation computer-assisted.
In 2004, to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the revival of the Celtic toothing-stone in Brittany, Alan Stivell publishes, in collaboration with Jean-Christmas Verdier, a book reporting the history of the instrument: “Telenn, the Breton toothing-stone”. In 2004 also, leaves a CD-DVD entitled “Course”, mixture of republications and unexpected innovations, which receives a great public success (gold DVD).
In March 2006, 22e album entitled Explores (distributed for the first time by Harmonia Mundi) where continues an “electro” orientation, already started in Brian Boru and the following, where it does itself a big part of the programmings, in particular mixing with it electronic bagpipe and its very new prototype of electric toothing-stone. This disc is accommodated with enthusiasm by the hexagonal press (in particular the four Télérama keys, Libération) and foreign.
In September 2007, in margin of the Breizh Touch in Paris, it receives the 9th Disque of gold of its career.
A man of conviction
Alan Stivell, its nationality, the statute of BrittanyOne of the combat of Alan Stivell relates to the statute of the Brittany: he declares himself favorable to an internal autonomy within the French Republic, following the example Scotland and Wales with the the United Kingdom. Stivell recognizes itself that he is “French citizen” but he affirms Breton initially and imagines Brittany like an autonomous entity. In 1975, the disc E Dulenn , recorded in public with the Stadium National of Dublin, begin with a militant declamation of the singer, entitled Délivrance :
Here come time from delivery/far from us any idea from revenge/We will keep our friendship with the people of France
In 2002, he declares in a conference:
In this case, we obtain autonomy (it does not matter the word) within the framework of the French Republic. Where is the problem? Will a majority of Breton one day more remote, ask, like me, which one is directly federate in Europe? Who would have the right to deprive them? | Identities and democracy , PURE, Rennes, 2002
Évocant thus a direct fastening in Europe. In 2005, in Armorican (continuation) on the album Back to Breizh , it sings: “Breton Nation will astonish/(those) which believed to bury you already,/the world does not exist without you,…”
Other positionsIn addition, Alan Stivell expressed its positions in other fields, in particular on the political plan and philosophical. It is classified itself like an internationalist of left. Since its professional beginnings, it did not have of cease to proclaim, in its writings as in its dires, its faith in the human equality, its hatred for any injustice; he was always progressist, social, feminist, ecologist, for a North-South solidarity, against all the borders, which, in addition, does not prevent a spiritual search out of the churches, in the search of a more universal spirituality, taking account of the approaches of all civilizations, and even of atheistic spiritualities (cf its Celtic Symphonie ).
Reference mark discographics( except compilations )
- 1970: Reflections
- 1972: Rebirth of the Celtic Toothing-stone
- 1972: In Olympia ( concert )
- 1973: Dirt tracks
- 1974: E Langonned
- 1975: E Dulenn ( Concert in Dublin)
- 1976: Trema' N Inis - Towards the Island
- 1977: Before landing/Raok Dilestra - Before Accosting
- 1978: a dewezh 'barzh 'gêr - Day at the house
- 1979: International turn - rear Tro Bed ( concert )
- 1980: Celtic Symphony - Shooting Na nOg
- 1981: Ground of alive - Bed year dud vew
- 1983: Légend (E) - Mojenn -
- 1985: Toothing-stone of the new age
- 1991: The mist off Avalon
- 1993: Again
- 1994 : Telenn Geltiek (Celtic Toothing-stone) ¹
- 1995: Brian Boru
- 1998 : 1 Douar
- 1999: Bretagnes in Bercy
- 2000: Back to Breizh
- 2002 : Beyond the words - In you-hont rear it homzoù - Beyond words
- 2003: Celtic Night II at the Stade de France ( concert )
- 2006: Explores
¹ republication out of Cd of two discs vinyls recorded in 1960 and 1963
- 1973 : Ar It hoarezed Goadeg ( With Bobino )
- 1974: Bagad Bleimor
- 1989 : Kate Bush ( Sensual World )
- 1994: Glenmor ( Year Distro “And here well my Ground” )
- 1999: Soïg Sibéril ( Gwenojenn )
- List of Breton type-setters
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