“… ‘the Bob Dylan of Slovenia”•
, Vlado Kreslin is a Slovenian
music legend, equally beloved by all…” -Brushvox
“… Slovenia’s most beloved singer/songwriter…” –John
Schneider, Performance Preview, Milwaukee
Tista črna kitara
Namesto koga roža cveti
The Passenger (with R.E.M.)
Don’t Think Twice (It’s All Right)
Vlado at the Cankarjev Dom
Allan Taylor, Vlado,, Hans Theessink
Odhaja Dan
Tista Črna Kitara
Poj mi pesem
Namesto koga roža cveti
Chris Eckman (The Walkabouts), Mike Mills, Peter Buck (R.E.M.) Vlado
Vlado and Michael Stipe (R.E.M.)
"Vlado Kreslin is the Slovenian 'Bob Dylan'. He is immensely popular in Slovenia. His songs have been used
as the basis for novels and films. Scott McCaughey (R.E.M.) introduced me to his music, having discovered
Kreslin's music when he opened for R.E.M. this past summer in Slovenia." - Chris Eckman of The Walkabouts
who have recorded their own version of Vlado's song Tista črna kitara (That Black Guitar) on their album “The Train
Leaves At Eight”.
“The concerts in the Cankarjev Dom in Ljubljana were a great success – 2000 seats sold out for the three
nights. This is a credit to Vlado Kreslin and shows just how popular he is. This year was the twenty year
celebration of having played (and filled) the concert hall every year. It was not only fun but a privilege to
play and sing with my crazy, beautiful friend.” -Allan Taylor, winner of the Grand Prix du Disque de Montreaux
for the best European album for his album “The Traveller”.
"Vlado Kreslin is a singer-songwriter of nearly mythical proportions in Slovenia. Some of his songs have
become such classic folk standards here, their melodies so firmly entwined with this young country's
emergence, that when you hear them - at weddings, campfires, parties, in schoolrooms - it's hard to believe
that they didn't always exist. But Vlado Kreslin, far from being a monument, is still writing, still exploring,
still filling his homeland with incredible music..." - Erica Johnson Debeljak, Author of Forbidden Bread
"Vlado Kreslin is one of the greatest poets and singers from Eastern Europe....His gentle soul and his
powerful voice became a Slovenian national treasure.....His poetry moves high intellectuals as much as
ordinary people...I am simply in love with his music and his outstanding performances..." -Rade Šerbedžija,
Actor and Musician
"Vlado Kreslin wrote so “Marvelous…[Kreslin provides] a magic fusion of so many Mitteleuropean motifs
that put me in mind of everything from the films of Emir Kusturica to the novels of Bohumil
Hrabal…[Kreslin is] of such standing that everyone who comes to central Europe, from Dylan to R.E.M.,
plays with him…So much great modern art and writing has risen out of the polyglot world of central
Europe…I realize that Kreslin’s music is entirely of his own world, and yet enlarged that world to include
anyone who wished to be a part of it.” - Richard Flanagan, Best-Selling Author of Gould’s Book of Fish
“The more I listen to [Kreslin’s CD] ‘Kreslinčice’, the more I am seriously impressed. In ‘Tista Črna Kitara’
(the only song with which I am familiar with the English words) - it seems like a little short story from
someone's early life (I presume Kreslin’s) and it rings very true because of that. The arrangements are
outstanding. When I first hear the word "cigane" - that is when the violin first enters - in Classical music, we
call that "word painting" --‘Vrikanje in Jok’ has arrangements that sound a little like a merry-go-round, and
‘Spominičic’" is like a little lullaby with the cembalom. I've only been interested in a modern popular music
a short time, but the only other song writers I know of who have such a diverse range of arrangements and
sound are Paul Simon and Francis Cabrel .” – Matthew Davidson, American pianist and composer
Bil sem še Vladek,
ko so - kot vedno za praznik prišli
brkati cigani v hišo igrat.
Oče je stopil v sobo po tisto črno kitaro,
ki jo je kupil
za prvo plačo.
At every feast
In those early days of youth,
Our home resounded with song
Played by the mustachioed Gypsies.
My father too swept the strings of that black
The one he had bought
With his first wages.
Gospod tisto kitaro še imate,
gospod, tisto črno kitaro še imate?
Gospod, tista bila je res dobra.
Do you still have that guitar, Sir?
Sir, do you still play that black guitar?
That, sir, was the greatest of all.
So ga spraševali
še dolgo po tem,
zmeraj, ko hoteli so prositi drobiž.
Zmeraj, ko igrali so v vaški gostilni
in hodili v pavzah do šanka.
Pa njihove žene,
ko prišle so pred vrata
po stare obleke,
so rade vprašale:
Years on,
When they would pass and reach out for a coin
or two,
They'd ask him about the guitar.
Years on, as they stole away to the bar,
Far from their resting instruments,
Which enchanted the guests through the night.
Their women too,
As they knocked on our door,
To plead for our garments, tattered and worn,
Would ask, eyes gleaming:
Gospod, tisto kitaro še imate,
gospod, tisto črno kitaro še imate?
Gospod, tista bila je res dobra.
Včasih, ko pridem domov,
sedim pod kostanji
in pijem,
pijem s prijat'li,
ki tam še živijo.
Takrat, skoraj vedno
pri mizi
za nas zaigrajo
in vprašajo,
otroški obrazi
s hripavim glasom:
Gospoud, tisto gitaro šče mate,
gospoud, tisto čarno gitaro šče mate?
Gospoud, tista je bijla dobra,
tista je bijla dobra.
Vlado in Prekmurje, 1989
Do you still have that guitar, Sir?
Sir, do you still play that black guitar?
That, sir, was the greatest of all.
Once in a while, when back at my home,
I empty a few glasses,
Embraced by the shade of our chestnut tree,
I drink with my friends,
Whose lives are still bound to that land.
Then, strings by the table,
the Gypsies would never miss a chance to
play up the crowd,
and ask once again,
with their childish eyes and voices deep and
Do you still have that guitar, Sir?
Sir, do you still play that black guitar?
That, sir, was the greatest of all,
Indeed, the greatest of all.
Vlado and Allan Taylor
Kakšno noč, ko pri štorkljah prespim
pod visečo meglo
tiho, sam, med njimi stojim
le noge nad vodo.
Ko pa žarek pregrize temo,
prebudimo se iz sanj,
močvirje novih želja
bo odletelo v nebo.
Namesto koga roža cveti,
namesto koga sem jaz,
katera koža najbolj diši,
čigava pesem rabi moj glas?
Če pa trava nad mojo zemljo
bo pognala kak cvet,
enim tiho kapljo v oko,
drugim dal bo med.
Namesto koga roža cveti,
namesto koga sem jaz,
katera koža najbolj diši,
čigava pesem rabi moj glas?
On a night when I share the vast skies with
the storks,
Beneath the floating screen of haze,
Alone and silent, I mingle with them,
Feet upon the rain-scented grass.
As the first sunbeam eats through the dark,
We are drawn from the pool of our dreams,
And new desires, once tied to the
sheltering moor,
Now vanish, as they sail into the heavenly
Instead of whom does the flower bloom,
Instead of whose does my heart pound,
What skin smells sweetest of all,
And what song needs my voice to strike the
Should the grasses bloom above me,
Some eyes will melt in tears,
While others will see only a flower.
Instead of whom does the flower bloom,
Instead of whose does my heart pound,
What skin smells sweetest of all,
And what song calls for my voice.
Vlado 2010
Vlado and Hans Theessink
Warm, personable, relaxed... Vlado Kreslin
is Slovenia’s most beloved and renowned
musician. Drawing on his folk and ethnic
heritage for inspiration, he occupies a
unique place in the Slovenian music scene.
Folk, blues, pop, jazz-- he does it all, and
with his guitar and his honey-graveled voice
he draws listeners into his romantic and
strangely familiar world.
Iztok Cergol, Vlado, and Štefan Banko
Vlado, Cankarjev Dom, Ljubljana, December 2011
Considered an ethno-revivalist for his
modernization of Slovenian folk songs,
Kreslin’s annual concerts at Cankar Hall in
Ljubljana are a traditional event in the city's
cultural calendar. He’s performed
worldwide, including shows in Adelaide,
Australia; Barcelona, Spain; and New York
City, shared the stage with R.E.M., the
Dubliners, Allan Taylor, Hans Theessink,
Vlatko Stefanovski, and the Walkabouts,
and has opened for R.E.M., Rory Gallagher,
and Bob Dylan. In addition to performing
songs in Slovenian, Kreslin's repertoire also
includes songs sung in English,
Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, Italian, and
Judaeo-Spanish as well as folk songs sung in
the various dialects of Slovenia, including
his mother tongue from Prekmurje.
Kreslin’s songs and poems have been the
basis for books and films, most notably
Namesto Koga Roža Cveti, which inspired
Feri Laišček's award winning book of the
same name and in turn was the basis for
the movie Halgato. He has also been an
actor in several movies, including Halgato
and Slavic Angel, and the play Three Other
Sisters in Milwaukee, WS.
In 2009 Kreslin was honored by Yale
University at a Master's Tea where he was
awarded the honorary title of Quincey
Porter Fellow. His poems have been
published in Poetry in Translation and
Confrontation, and in 2012 Guernica
Editions will publish his book of poems,
Instead of Whom Does the Flower Bloom.
Twenty years and fifty concerts at the Cankarjev Dom
The Secret History of Art
Noah Charney on Art Crimes and Art Historical Mysteries
December 16, 2011, 5:10 am
The Greatest Rock Star You’ve Never Heard Of: Vlado Kreslin
Vlado Kreslin is Slovenia’s most popular folk-rock musician. While that might sound for a moment like
calling someone the biggest star in Litchfield County, Connecticut, the fact that Kreslin is from a
tiny central-European nation of two million tucked between Venice, Vienna, and Zagreb has not
impeded his popularity, over decades, throughout the Balkans and at an international scale.
Kreslin has over a dozen albums to his name, and is a well-respected published poet (a collection
of his poetry will be published in English for the first time by Guernica Editions in 2012). The
great poet Charles Simic wrote admiringly in The New York Review of Books of Kreslin’s
performances during a recent poetry festival in Bosnia that they both attended. He was made an
honorary fellow at Yale University in 2009. Michael Stipe of R.E.M. was pleased to share a stage
with Kreslin, who has also performed several times with Bob Dylan. The fact that he has achieved
such acclaim while based in a little-known country is that much more impressive.`
Kreslin’s music is nearest in style to Bruce Springsteen, a mixture of thoughtful folk music, multiinstrumental rock, and traditional folk tunes borrowing styles and influences from throughout the former
Yugoslavia. This made something of a political statement after the war in Sarajevo, when Kreslin performed
one of the earliest post-war concerts, and overtly called for unity by bringing together musicians from rival
ethnic groups to perform one another’s folk ballads. Kreslin’s lyrics are evocative and intelligent, and he
politicizes without being overtly political. He uses music to unify politically, and his songs bridge
generations—teenagers know his oeuvre as well as their parents do.
Every December, Kreslin and his band (he performs with a traditional octogenarian band, Beltinska Banda,
as well as a band of thirty-somethings, Mali Bogovi, the Little Gods, on the same stage) perform a series of
three sold-out concerts at Cankarjev Dom, the main cultural center of Slovenia’s capital, Ljubljana. My wife
(she’s Slovene) and I have attended many of these concerts (and full disclosure, Kreslin is a friend of ours,
and my wife is the translator of his soon-to-be-released poetry collection), including the climactic concert
this past Wednesday.
Attending one of Kreslin’s concerts is something to add to your life’s to-do list.
There is a charisma, a calm channeled passion, to truly great performers, be they stage actors, movie stars,
rhetoricians, or musicians. It combines an absolute comfort with the material, with an un-teachable aura
that surrounds the performer and spreads out to the audience. I’ve seen it on stage with great actors like
Michael Gambon and John Hurt. They step on stage and the theater quivers. Kreslin has a similar presence
and his riotous, moving three-hour concerts harness that energy.
A woman from Dallas, Texas once stumbled across Kreslin’s music and, not understanding a word, was
nevertheless mesmerized. She booked a flight to Slovenia to attend a concert, but the concert was suddenly
cancelled. She contacted Kreslin and he arranged for her and her husband to dine at his home, where he
gave them a free, impromptu private concert in lieu of the cancelled gig. She’s now writing Kreslin’s
biography. Hard to imagine Bruce Springsteen inviting a Slovenian fan to his house for dinner and a private
concert if a big gig were cancelled—that says nothing negative about The Boss, but it does speak well of
Kreslin. If he can so inspire a Texan on first listen that she hops on a plane and decides to pen his
biography, then surely he’s worth a listen.
Vlado, Cankarjev Dom, Ljubljana, December 2011
Contact information:
Izletniška 13, Ljubljana 1231 Slovenia
T: +386.1.5616.730
F: +386.1.5612.098
Photo credits: Polona Eržen, Sonja Garnitschnig,
Miro Majcen, Egon Kaše, Gašper Furman, Nejc Höstl,
Aleš Rosa
Hvala lepa – - Thank you very much
1. januar ob 17.15 - TV Slovenija, 1.
program - Tista črna kitara, posnetek
koncerta (75 minut) - Cankarjev dom,
7. januar - Sobotna noč, TV Slovenija, 1.
program - Tista črna kitara, celotni
posnetek koncerta - Cankarjev dom,
17. januar ob 18. uri - Slovenj Gradec Knjigarna Mladinske knjige, Pesmarica predstavitev knjige
18. januar ob 18. uri - Celje - Knjigarna
Mladinske knjige - Pesmarica predstavitev knjige
19. januar ob 18. uri - Maribor Knjigarna Mladinske knjige - Pesmarica
- predstavitev knjige
26. januar ob 19. uri - Koper - Knjigarna
Mladinske knjige - Pesmarica predstavitev knjige
27. januar ob 22. uri - Tvornica, ZagrebMary Coughlan &Vlado Kreslin prenos v živo
11.februar - Ptuj - Vlado Kreslin in Mali
21.februar - Cerkev Sv. Cirila (St.Cyril's
Roman Catholic Church, 62 St. Mark's
Place), New York NY, USA-Vlado
Kreslin - POJEZIJE
9.marec - Ljutomer - Vlado Kreslin, Mali
bogovi in Beltinška banda
10.marec - Kranjska gora - Vlado Kreslin
in Mali bogovi
7.marec - Leipzig(Nemčija),UT
Connewitz - Vlado Kreslin
8.junij - Križevci pri Ljutomeru - Vlado
Kreslin in Mali bogovi
1.julij - Lent, Maribor, Veliki oder Vlado Kreslin, Mali bogovi in Beltinška
28.avgust - Križanke (Festival
Ljubljana), Ljubljana - Vlado Kreslin,
Mali bogovi in Beltinška banda
5.oktober - Drama SNG Maribor, Three
Other Sisters-Theatre Gigante,
Milwaukee, USA-gledališka predstava,
Vlado Kreslin vloga mornarja in glasba

Vlado Kreslin