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Why is Polka music played in Poland so much different than in the USA?


Franek 8 | 271  
20 Apr 2008 /  #1
In America,we listen to Polish music that the immigrants brought over with them. We still sing the same songs today.
I was surprised that after joining this group,that every thing in Poland is rock???? What happend to the songs that your fathers sang?. At first I thought that it was just a generation gap. But we still dance to the same old music. Our kids do to.. This is all that they ever knew
CoolMoon 1 | 60  
21 Apr 2008 /  #2
Franek, if you could perhaps post some of the songs you are talking about? I'm sure they are still sung in Poland even if the general music tastes of the Polish young have moved on. The old songs will still be there... :)
mamaye 2 | 38  
21 Apr 2008 /  #3
first of all, not everything in Poland is rock, aye....:///
actually everything is the same like anywhere else within so called "western" music...even reggae styles are quite well represented...
besides, its obvious that the immigrants bring sth with them, not only music. the process of saving or loosing their culture may differ but it concerns all aspects of life, including music. they can either listen to songs they know from their own country or addapt new music from the new place. or mix. whatever. I see nothing really surprising here!

and here in Poland my parents dance to something they like, I dance to sth I like and my kids will probably do the same... if you like the song your grandma sang 20 years ago its fine and if not - its fine too... however I havent seen people aged 20-30 dancing to the songs their grandfathers sang and listen to...but maybe I haven't seen much;))

try to find some polish jazz music, its amazing! look for możdżer, anna maria jopek, ula dudziak... other cool music: everything that is created by waglewski and now his sons too, fish and emade...marysia sadowska sings older beautiful music composed by komeda, there is another girl worth listening - maria peszek...

i'd never call this rock music;)
have fun!:)
OP Franek 8 | 271  
21 Apr 2008 /  #4
Allow me to clear one thing up.When I posted this thread, there was no malice intended, it just my curiousity as to why it was so different.Let me give you a few examples as to what we listen to. Below is just one of many that I know

PONIEDZIA£EK RANO
W poniedziałek rano
Kosił ojciec siano,
kosił ojciec, kosił ja,
kosiliśmy obydwa.

A we wtorek rano
Grabił ojciec siano,
Grabił ojciec, grabił ja,
Grabiliśmy obydwa.

A we środę rano
Suszył ojciec siano,
Suszył ojciec, suszył ja,
Suszyliśmy obydwa.

A we czwartek rano
Zwoził ojciec siano,
Zwoził ojciec, zwoził ja,
Zwoziliśmy obydwa.

A zaś w piątek rano
Sprzedał ojciec siano,
Sprzedał ojciec, sprzedał ja,
Sprzedaliśmy obydwa.

A w sobotę rano
Stracił ojciec siano,
Stracił ojciec, Stracił ja,
Przepiliśmy obydwa.

A niedzielę z rana
Już nie było siana,
Płakał ojciec, płakał ja,
Płakaliśmy obydwa.
one of many that I know.

There are many more

Goral czy cie nie zal

Jak szybko mijaju chwile

Czyja ta drzewczyna

Glemboka Studzenka

Plynie Wisala

Wojenko Wojenko ETC.

If I made any mistakes in my Polish. Try to overlook it. For I have never been to Poland. This is my Polish American.LOL
mafketis 21 | 7,402  
21 Apr 2008 /  #5
In modern Poland, the Polka is one of the least represented musical forms as young, educated people wouldn't be caught dead doing anything connected with traditional Polish and (in their minds) uneducated/peasant culture.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #6
One of the most memorable polka lyrics I heard was during friend's of a friend wedding. One of the older women sang the following (transcribed in heavy dialect, as I heard it):

Nie bede sie łopirała
Wy mie chłopy ciągta
Zaciągta mie za stodołe
I tam mie wyrąbta

As for the translation, I'd ask Krysia for it. She's the best one here.
OP Franek 8 | 271  
21 Apr 2008 /  #7
mafketis, let me get this straight.Only uneducated Peasants respond to this type of Polka Music. Hmmm! that is a good thing to know. I will pass it on.. OH, by the way. Do you consider yourself as one of Polands educated youths?
mafketis 21 | 7,402  
21 Apr 2008 /  #8
Franku, relax. I'm not Polish (or a youth). Also, I like Polkas and think it's a shame that they're neglected in Poland. But they are neglected and the prevailing attitude among young educated Poles is basically what I wrote (again: I disagree).
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #9
Franek

While I can't answer for mafketis, I have often heard Varsovians offering that type of comments. Strangely, Warsaw's past WW2 population is greatly of "peasant/uneducated" origin, even the so called "educated" ones.

As for the truthfulness of his words... well, he's full of $hit. Chopin's music is based on this "uneducated/peasant" culture. The concert halls are frequented by none other but the educated and cultured. Apparently, mafketis's idea of "educated" culture has to do with the "undeducated" slave culture of the USA from which so much of what kids listen to today is derived.
Lukasz 49 | 1,746  
21 Apr 2008 /  #10
In America,we listen to Polish music that the immigrants brought over with them. We still sing the same songs today.I was surprised that after joining this group,that every thing in Poland is rock???? What happend to the songs that your fathers sang?. At first I thought that it was just a generation gap. But we still dance to the same old music. Our kids do to.. This is all that they ever knew

I would say that it is not so populart as it was ;). And will never be so popular again. What can be interesting that people form big cities (esp. educated) are more and more interested about Folk music. (of course it is not big phenomenon).

I have seen on old market in Poznan festivals when you can buy traditional food, or see some folk dancers/singers.
z_darius 14 | 3,968  
21 Apr 2008 /  #11
are more and more interested about Folk music

The "educated" or "uneducated" version? ;)
Lukasz 49 | 1,746  
21 Apr 2008 /  #12
Educated ... it means original :)
OP Franek 8 | 271  
21 Apr 2008 /  #13
Mafketis! Yes, you upset me in the way that you said it.. But I can overlook your statement,because here in America. Our kids are doing the same things.. They have no ties to Polka music at all. I suppose it's all involved in which generation we come from.
cyg 5 | 119  
21 Apr 2008 /  #14
The thing is, polka music is originally NOT Polish, but Czech. The name has nothing to do with Poland, but with the tempo - "polka" as in "half" for its 2/4 time signature. Polka music was at one time very popular in Poland, and in many other Central European countries as well, but that does not make it Polish. And as far as young people's preferences, they've simply moved on.
mamaye 2 | 38  
21 Apr 2008 /  #15
mamma mia...

:)

i didn't even want to touch the word "polka" in the title, but obviously cyg is right and thanks for this little explanation!:)

there are other misunderstandings too...probably it's my fault, forgive me my poor English, maybe i just can't express myself as i wish to..

so...why i don't dance or sign polkas, mazurkas or other oberkas?
it's difficult and now only profesionalists do so - i mean, Polish Folklore Bands (by the way, they sing and dance mostly for polonias abroad!!). sure, there are still families that the tradition is cultivated, but not many of them (unfortunatelly!!!)

im really glad that when i was little i had a chance to listen to my grandma's singing, i know all lyrics of "plynie wisla plynie" and others..and im 32.

hopefully i can sing it to my children too. but its just for fun, let's say, there is no tradition line anymore.
and yes, people in poland are interested in polish folk music!! i could even say IT IS a big phenomenon! its just sth different than what you wrote, it's called "new tradition", same like everywhere again, it's a kind of fashion, if you are famous jazz artist (for example) you rather should record one or too folk songs, its almost a must.

its pretty tough for me to explain it, there is a difference between folk and folklore, even we call it here "muzyka folk" that is different than "muzyka ludowa"...it's a translation problem that i wouldnt dare to approach:))

once again,sorry for all misunderstandings.
hopefully this post is more or less clear...uffffff;)
cyg 5 | 119  
22 Apr 2008 /  #16
"Muzyka folk" is basically Anglo-Irish-American folk, possibly with some "world music" thrown in. "Muzyka ludowa" is Polish folk music. The former is far more popular in Poland, though Polish music has its fans, too.
mamaye 2 | 38  
22 Apr 2008 /  #17
i dont agree (ups, even we argue, Polish in Poland!;)
muzyka folk is not only "Anglo-Irish-American folk", it can be any folklore based sounds! however, as you wrote, this type is quite popular in Poland, maybe the most popular among all other folk music traditions. but Latin is folk too! (i dont mean shakira;)and many many more...muzyka folk or folkowa (as we call it) its relatively new expression in Polish and it originates from English of course, that maybe led you to name it only Anglo-Irish-American...here it used to be always "ludowa" or "folklorystyczna", folk has its roots in tradition but its more acceptable as it can be mixed with modern styles and techniques.

a good example of that can be indian "swarmalika" (sargam) music that is not easy to listen for "western" people, but nusrat fateh ali khan (for example) transformed the difficult traditional style for the worldwide fascination (recording succesfully more than 100 albums!!!)

i dont like the expression "world music" as its connected with some relaxation or so called "new age" music which means sometimes "everything that is slow" ...

anyway...im a big fun of many folk traditions in music and im graduated from ethnic studies, so even if its sounds a bit fanatic;) pls forgive!
drifter - | 8  
22 Apr 2008 /  #18
Polka vs Rock? That's like asking why all the music in the US is rock and not folk music... or why everything in Italy is dance music and not Opera...

I'm canadian and lived in Poland for 2 years and experienced a wide range of music, although my tastes revolved around electronic music. For the more popular acts, I'm really fond of Reni Jusis.

I found that polish hip hop was very popular. For a taste of that, look up 'polski hip hop' on Youtube. Unfortunately, you'll find a lot of the gangstar bling-bling stuff but the sound is still unique.

Also, I didnt know until I lived there that Vader were polish!
cyg 5 | 119  
22 Apr 2008 /  #19
Who am I to argue with a fan and an expert? But I would stand by what I said in the sense that this is what most people mean when they use the name.
mamaye 2 | 38  
22 Apr 2008 /  #20
yip, cyg, most people who use the name but never listen to folk;))in this sense I agree too:))
polishtrucker 3 | 6  
1 Nov 2009 /  #21
Nov 1, 09, 11:54 - Thread attached on merging:
Polish polka music in the US

What do polish people think of polka music in the US ? I think theres alot of good polka bands in wisconsin and chicago with good polish vocals
krysia 23 | 3,058  
1 Nov 2009 /  #22
with good polish vocals

Maybe the ones from Chicago sing better. Here they sing with an accent.
Some Polish people who visited Wisconsin didn't like the polka music, they said it sounded different than in Poland.
MareGaea 29 | 2,752  
1 Nov 2009 /  #23
Weird Al Jankovitc: Polka Your Eyes Out.



Halleluyah!

>^..^<

M-G (likes Weird Al at times)
osiol 55 | 3,922  
1 Nov 2009 /  #24
Some Polish people who visited Wisconsin didn't like the polka music

Maybe Polka not being a Polish style of music could have something to do with it.

půl - half in Czech
-k- diminutive
-a typical feminine noun ending

It's origins are Czech.

The Scandinavian Polska dance (and associated musical style) is named after Poland, as is the Polonaise. Both of these are in 3/4 time (waltz) whereas Polka is 2/4.
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448  
1 Nov 2009 /  #25
Surpisingly most Poles in Poland do not realise that the polka music industry is quite big in America.The Polish polka alone (as it is called) is divded into the Chicago and the east coast sound, and there are also Slovenian, Slovak, Czech, German, Lithuanian and (esp. in Canada) Ukrainian polkas. Included in the notion of polka music are also obereks and waltzes. There are polka music programmes on radio stations across america. And even snooty Poles (liek the disco/polo/bashers!!) from Poland agree (after the 5th or 6th round of drinks) that polkas are an integral part of the fun festivites at a traditonal Pol-Am wedding.

Incidentally, a polka category was introduced into the Grammy Awards a few years ago. One of the best-known and, I believe, Grammy-awarded polka musicians is an Irish American whose name at the moment escapes me. Maybe someone on PF knows.

For those seeking additional enlightenment:
pbs.org/riverofsong/music/e1-polka.html
nunczka 8 | 458  
1 Nov 2009 /  #26
and, I believe, Grammy-awarded polka musicians is an Irish American whose name at the moment escapes me.

JIMMY STURR
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448  
1 Nov 2009 /  #27
Yes, indeed. It's Jimmy Sturr. Many dzięks!
Mr Grunwald 19 | 1,542  
2 Nov 2009 /  #28
The Scandinavian Polska dance (and associated musical style) is named after Poland, as is the Polonaise.

Yeah I remember when training for prom, I just wtf?
"It's your dance!"
No, it's definatly not...
umbro2914 - | 3  
3 Nov 2009 /  #29
almost all of the "traditional Polish American festivals" in the U.S, at least here on the East Coast are very OUT DATED. Nothing has changed in these festivals since the time they were created, (50 yrs ago?) Although they are nice gatherings and have delicious food, the overwhelming majority are Polish Americans, and not Polish immigrants, and thus most of the stuff, for example the out dated Polka music, the cheesy souveniers etc etc are there because Polish Americans like? or think thats what Polish is. In reality, Poland is just like any other European nation, with hip new music. Thats why I also think many Polish American Festivals need a slight face-lift.
MareGaea 29 | 2,752  
3 Nov 2009 /  #30
Maybe Polka not being a Polish style of music could have something to do with it.

So it has to be Polish for Polish ppl to like it? Hm. So they don't like Rock and Roll, Blues, Hip Hop, House, Soul and on and on and on, because it's not Polish?

And: I think Polka is boring, dreadful and very obsolete. But that could be because it's not a Dutch style of music.

>^..^<

M-G (more coffee)

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