by Dragana Stojanović
The compositional and conceptual combinatorics of techniques, sometimes drastically different musical styles related to different cultural narratives, different historical periods and different geographical areas is not rare in World Music genre musical practice. However, in addition, specifically in the field of contemporary World Music practice inspired by the music of the Balkan region is relatively rare to meet so many stylish complex musical invention that, in fact, gets presented through the medium of sound, but also film and stage performances, which is exactly the case with musical creativity by Emir Kusturica & The No Smoking Orchestra.
Although cooperation Emir Kusturica`s, multiple award-winning film maker and the groups No Smoking Orchestra whose beginnings are connected to Sarajevo Group No smoking, dating back to the nineteen eighties which continuously is being continued throughout the last decade of the twentieth century, a group Emir Kusturica & No Smoking Orchestra under given name officially existed since 1999.
The group has ten members, whose diverse instrumentation and individual musical preferences point to the intertwining of different musical styles, heritage and the system that the group uses in its creative and performing practice. At the same time the presence of acoustic and electric instruments as well as the parallel use of musical instruments related to traditional folk practices and modern musical creativity only enhance the effect of sound collage and open up new possibilities of thinking allowed combinatorics inter genre of music connectivity, which can accompany virtually every track by Emir Kusturica & No Smoking Orchestra, no matter if it was composed for popular theatrical performance, opera and theatrical performance or film.
The current members of the group Emir Kusturica & The No Smoking Orchestra are:
Emir Kusturica (rhythm guitar, lead guitar, backing vocals)
Dejan Sparavalo (violin and backing vocals),
Nenad Janković aka dr. Nele Karajlić (lead vocals, backing vocals, keyboards)
Stribor Kusturica ( percussion and backing vocals )
Dražen Janković (keyboards, backing vocals)
Zoran Milošević (accordion)
Nenad Petrović ( saxophone)
Zoran Marjanović (percussion)
Goran Popović (tuba, trombone, bass guitar)
Ivan Maksimović ( lead guitar, rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar, bouzouki )
In addition, through the history of the existence of the group have performed in it: Goran Markovski (bass guitar, bass balalaika), Goran Jakovljevic (guitar), Alexander Balaban (tuba, trombone) and Nenad Gajin (lead guitar, rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar).
For more than twelve years of work groups Emir Kusturica & The No Smoking Orchestra has published five albums: Unza Unza Time (2000), whose title refers to the distinctive two - quarter rhythm that characterizes a large part of the corpus of traditional South Slavic Balkan music, especially playing heritage, then Live in Buenos Aires (2001) and La vieest un Miracle (2004) and Live Is A Miracle in Buenos Aires (2005), while the album Emir Kusturica's Time of the Gypsies Punk Opera (2007) refers to the music prepared: the punk opera Time of the Gypsies directed by Emir Kusturica, which premiered in Paris in the same year. In 2009 appears a compilation of previous tracks issued by Emir Kusturica & The No Smoking Orchestra called The Best of Emir Kusturica and The No Smoking Orchestra.
The recognisability of the music creation groups Emir Kusturica and No Smoking Orchestra mostly evident in the characteristic compositional and arranger processes which include compounds of music styles, genres, instruments and vocal techniques which are in their contrast complementary, mutually inspire and develop following the individual and collective invention of the members of the group and creating a musical image of stylish collage which is composed of both models and motifs of traditional musical heritage of the Balkans (Roma, South Slav and the wider Balkan heritage), and other musical heritage, styles and traditions (jazz music), all of which gets accompanied by specific performative (Pizziccato performing the A string string instruments, glissando, specific trileri) and the compositional technique (variation, collage, citing, paraphrasing, the improvisation).
Performing throughout Europe (Italy, Portugal, Spain, France and generally southern Europe where the starting cycle of their performances abroad in the late nineties of the twentieth century), North America (where it emphasizes the participation of groups Emir Kusturica & The No Smoking Orchestra at the renowned jazz festival Le Festival International de Jazz de Montreal in Montreal, 2010) and south America (from the beginning of the millennium to date) within the different musical and artistic events, group Emir Kusturica & the No Smoking Orchestra continues to present his vision of the international and intercultural Balkans, the Balkans between myth unreality that exists in parallel with its past and future of the Balkans and the way he viewed and performed in the musical idea of dialogue and cooperation of Emir Kusturica and the No Smoking Orchestra band.
translated by Dejan Stojkovski