Archive for December, 2015

The Séguin brothers – Le conseil de guerre

Robert et Richard

Bob and Richard

“Le conseil de guerre” (The War Council) is a traditional piece dating back to the Napoleonic Wars. It was discovered by Pierre Bensusan, the brilliant French-Algerian singer-guitarist. In our arrangement, the second part of the instrumental sequence in the middle of the song is another traditional piece called “Douce dame jolie”, which dates back the Middle Ages.

Our version of this piece lasts almost eight minutes. I remember when all pop songs were radio-friendly with a maximum length of three minutes. Bob Dylan was the first to break this barrier with the publication of “Like A Rolling Stone” in 1965, although his own record label (Columbia Records) and several DJs tried to hinder him. But even at six and a half minutes, “Like A Rolling Stone” was too popular to be obstructed and paved the way for artists who wanted to take the required time to express themselves, without the restrictions of the music industry. Soon, we had “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” by Iron Butterfly, which, at seventeen minutes, took up a whole side of a vinyl record.

Roch et son tambour amérindien

Roch and his buffalo drum

On the long list of human stupidity, war is certainly at the top of page one. We’re not the first ones to choose this time of peace to sensitize people to the folly of war – in December 1971, John Lennon released “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” in protest to the Vietnam war. So we wish you, Bob, Roch and myself, a merry Christmas and happiness in the coming year.

Peace on earth. War is over.

Bob Séguin: voice
Richard Séguin: guitars (acoustic, electric, 12-string), banjo, merlin, MIDI guitar (viola, fiddle)
Roch Tassé: drums and percussion

Le conseil de guerre

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