Polish State Folk Ballet Slask LP (Monitor, 196-)

As much as I tout my Italian roots, half of my blood is Polish. The Italian accounts for me being a cocky son-of-a-bitch; the Polish marks me with melancholy. Both run me into romanticism. So I brood and fight and brood some more. Then I get up and do a dance. Ha!

I plopped this record on the turntable not expecting much. Monitor Records is a fine label, they were off documenting international music before anyone else was, but unlike Folkways or Nonesuch, their stuff tends to be a bit more "slick". It tends toward professional music groups and state orchestras. I still pick them up when I find a Monitor record cheap, but it usually winds up in a stack, waiting for weeks, months, even years to hit the turntable. Slask got early platter time, pretty much because I wanted to hear what the Pole part of me had lurking in my musical genes...or something like that.

While most of the record is just okay, there are three songs that make me jump around. All three have a dour joy to them and are dance tunes. State orchestra, sure, but still good stuff.

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