El Naan / Castile, Spain
El Naán draws on the greatest and subtlest traditions of Castilian music. However, the group brings them into the world of contemporary culture and musical aesthetics. The members of the group approach their own music heritage with respect and attention. At the same time, they try to ensure that the works full of finesse and subtlety reach the contemporary listeners.
Music, based on traditional melodies and the sound of acoustic instruments, remains an important testimony to the living inspiration flowing from tradition. The subtle use of modern, electronic instruments makes the work of the group a bridge between the past and the future.
They come from Palencia in the heart of Castile. They uncover the Arabic, Celtic and Jewish heritage in the musical traditions of the Iberian Peninsula, and take Castilian folk music into the 21st century. The older listeners are delighted by the references to the traditional legacy of local culture, while the younger audiences are fascinated by their poetic and suggestive texts, and their dynamic, energetic and spectacular performances.
“The music of El Naán is not fusion, but musical archaeology. We searched patiently – both in the DNA of music, in its cultural intersections, as well as within ourselves – to create this project. It is tradition transformed by the emotions of the 21st century”, says Héctor Castrillejo, lyricist and creator of the group’s videos.
Last year, they released their second album, Codigo de Barros. It received very good reviews, much like the group’s concerts. Pilar Sampietro from Mediterraneo Radio 3 – Spanish state radio – said: “This is a group that deserves to be listened to live. If you’re ever nearby, there’s no doubt you should go to the concert. You’ll see that it’s worth it, you’ll see what can be done with a lot of love.” César Martín, organiser of the Demanda Folk Festival says: “Almost no one is doing with traditional music what El Naán does […] I think that currently they’re one of the most interesting musical offerings in Spain”, as well as “this isn’t just a musical project. I think that this is a philosophy and a lifestyle for them as well.”
Members of the group:
Carlos Herrero – voice, bouzouki, Cuban tres
Héctor Castrillejo – lyrics, video creator
César Díez – electric bass
María Alba – voice, percussion
Adal Pumarabín – percussion
Javier Mediavilla – electric guitar
César Tejero – saxophone
The concert took place in 2016.