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TIBET >> The Album: Inexil

Hubert von Goisern: Inexil

1998
Hubert von Goisern - INEXIL

24.06.98 | 74321579012 | Amazon

Inexil

  • 1. yerketamu
  • 2. panchen lama
  • 3. akupema
  • 4. losar
  • 5. kham-lu
  • 6. dream
  • 7. nyelu
  • 8. gendak-re
  • 9. sugkinyima
  • 10. 10. märz 1959
  • 11. dawa
  • 12. dherchen phama

Throughout my travels around the world, I have found mankind to be peaceful, allowing a very natural hierarchy to fall into place. Only a small minority disrespect this inherent structure with their self-indulgent desire to exercise power over others. Incapable of serving, they forfeit humanity and are determined to rule. Often camouflaged as ideological or religious crusaders, they are able to induce support. Time and time again, those lacking personal conviction happily release their responsibility for thought and decision. However, when these dominant groups realise their lack of power, as in the case of Tibet, they use force. This CD is the expression of my solidarity with the oppressed.

The idea for this production began two years ago after meeting Tibetan artists I was fascinated by their strange and seemingly inaccessible culture, yet they were completely occupied and controlled by the Chinese. More in an effort to refute the stories I had been told, rather than to confirm them, I packed my backpack and began my journey on the road to Lhasa.

Unfortunately, the reality of the Tibetans' plight surpassed all that I had heard or read. The despotic terror was as genuine as their passive resistance, resulting from the Tibetans' dedication to spirituality.

Pressured by my impressions, I returned to Austria and began my effort to represent their case. Immediately I was forced to experience their isolation, as cooperation with musicians living in Tibet would certainly place them in more danger. I turned to the artists of the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA), who were living in exile in Dharamsala, Northern India. Founded by the 14th Dalai Lama in 1959, TIPA cultivates the rich traditions of Tibetan music and dance, and above all, the Tibetan opera.

The initial recording was done in India. Wolfgang Spannberger, the sound technician for many years of all my musical adventures, along with our mobile sound studio, accompanied me for several weeks. Later, both European and South American instrumentalists, along with four of the singers: Passang, Sherab, Sonam and Jamjang, joined us in our studio in Salzburg to complete the additional recordings. Gradually our vision developed its form. Many times I lost hope of achieving anything, as omnipresent communication problems tested our limits of imagination.

However, together we found a way. Mutual respect and admiration along with our shared commitment closed the chasm between our cultures. We became one in pride and power. May this music foster courage for encounter.

Hubert von Goisern
Salzburg, 27th April 1998

The songs

Yerketamu

"Splendid and magnificent is Lhasa..." If one can ignore the surveillance cameras, the small district around Jokhand Monastery still displays some of its old charm. The other ninety per cent of Lhasa has been destroyed. The line of prostrating pilgrims moving between Chinese red light bars and the rows of military trucks is all that remains.

Panchen Lama

"You are the youngest prisoner of the world …" At the age of six, Gedhun Chokyi Nyima and his family were captured by Chinese police. Since 1995 they have been detained at an undisclosed location. In addition, the communist authorities placed a boy from a politically correct family in residence there. This is not only an absurd measure when one considers their atheistic presumption, but a sad example of misusing children for political scheming.

Akupema

This traditional Amdo folk song describes the diverse wildlife – tigers, eagles, vultures and swans - and wonderful landscape of this eastern Tibetan province.

Losar

In traditional Losar festivities, the Tibetan New Year is celebrated by singers walking from house to house and reciting folk tales.

Kham-Lu

The typical vocal tune from the province of Kham is Lu. This particular one is sung during the month-long journeys to and from Lhasa. It expresses the longing to return home.

Dream

"I dreamed I was in Tibet …" The author of this song is Ngawang Chophel. He is a member of TIPA and entered Tibet, the country of his forefathers, in 1995 "armed" with a tape recorder to research traditional songs. He was promptly arrested and sentenced to 18 years imprisonment on espionage charges.

Nyelu

This melody comes from the nomadic people of Tibet. The lyrics were written by the sixth Dalai Lama: Rindzin Dangzang Gyatso (1683-1706). After refusing to recite the traditional vows of the monks, he became a famous singer and poet. Rindzin Dangzang Gyatso's longing for worldly pleasures such as wine, women and song, is reflected in his verses, as is his despair. At age 23, he was arrested and murdered during a Mongolian invasion.

White crane, lend me your wings
Now that the smell of her sweet body is gone
And the drops of rain have washed away my songs
But the love, though unwritten,
Remain long after in the heart
And all that's left of my beloved
Are some footprints in the snow
But soon even those will be gone,
Even those will be gone.

Translation of the Tibetan lyrics:

I bow to the teachings of my lama,
but my heart escapes unnoticed to my beloved.
could I as devotedly follow the right path,
as I think of my beloved,
I would certainly attain enlightenment
in this life.

When the spring blooms wilt,
it is not for the turquoise bee to mourn,
when my beloved and I must part,
it is not for us to weep.
On the short path through life we had our share of joy.
Let us hope to meet again
In the youth of our next life.

Gendak-Re

Also from Amdo, this song is a plea for respect and tolerance of the elder members of society.

Sugkinyima

Excerpt from the Tibetan opera of the same name; the appearance of the "Queen of the Night" and her jester.

10th March 1959

On the 10th of March, 1959, thousands of Tibetan women and men gave their lives for the freedom and independence of their country; for Tibet …

Dawa

Instrumental

Dhernchen Phama

At farewell celebrations in the province of Kham, the entire village dances in a circle and sings the parental blessing before their children depart on a journey.