His twenty-piece Wedding and Funeral Orchestra, consisting of a Serbian Gypsy brass band, a classical string section, a male choir, and two Bulgarian women singers, decked out in their traditional folk costumes, fans out in a semicircle on the stage. Bregovic sits with a Fender electric guitar in his lap and shares center stage with his drummer who, though playing a significantly stripped-down version of the typically massive rock 'n' roll drum kit, never lets you forget Bregovic's rockin' roots. "Although drums are very important, it is the drummer's voice that occupies the central place," he recently explained. "I chose this drummer's voice because it is very open, bright, and brings a particular sense of joy into my music." Which, after all is sung and played, is what Bregovic's concerts are about--joyful celebrations.
[Originally published in October, 2011.]