From moody dance tunes and medieval ballads to hopelessly optimistic marches and drinking songs, the members of Mäd Fiddlu (Bart Brashers, John Peekstok and Anna Abraham) have shared their passion for energetic and intense Scandinavian music with Pacific Northwest audiences since 2007. Their unique sound is comprised of the Swedish nyckelharpa (a stringed instrument found in Sweden as early as the 1350s), cittern and guitar, and a sprinkling of vocals.
(kontrabasharpa, chromatic nyckelharpa, vocals)
Bart has emerged as one of the leaders of the American nyckelharpa community, travelling far and wide to teach and perform, both as a soloist as a member of various bands. When he was a child he taught himself to play a nyckelharpa his Swedish father built. Having lived and played in Sweden for extended periods, his playing reflects both a great passion for music and a deep knowledge of Swedish music and dance styles.
John grew up playing keyboards and drums in rock, blues, and jazz fusion bands. Somewhere along the line he discovered traditional folk and medieval music and picked up the guitar and cittern. He infuses the delicate traditional melodies and modal scales with the solidity and energy of American rock and blues. He performed and recorded for many years with the bands Telynor and Crookshank.
(chromatic nyckelharpa, fiddle, vocals)
Anna spent her teenage years learning traditional folk fiddling. She picked up the nyckelharpa at age 16 and has been teaching and performing ever since. Eventually she ended up in Sweden, learning from and playing with some of the great Swedish fiddlers and nyckelharpists.
This quintessential Swedish instrument has been around in one form or another for more than 600 years. After nearly dying out in the early 1900s, it was picked up by young Swedes during the folk music revival of the 1970s and made its way to America. It has three melody strings, one drone string and twelve sympathetic strings that provide a rich sustain. Bart also plays a kontrabasharpa, the type of instrument played in the 1700s. It has two melody strings with one drone positioned between them.
Empty Sea Studios
6300 Phinney Ave N
Seattle, WA 98103
|Kid Friendly: Yes!|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: No|