This article was translated by John R. Bopp

2016 is coming to an end, and it seems like 2017 might be a bit better.  We don’t want to let these days go by without greeting our friends and readers.  After all, now is a wonderful time to stop for a moment, reflect on our plans for the next 365 days, and wish everyone that this incoming year is their best ever.

We’ve been thinking about what we want to do with our blog in 2017 for a long time, and we think we’re going to have a lot of good surprises to offer.

But now, we just want to wish you all the best.  We hope 2017 will be a year full of good news, where we end up a little better off and a little happier.

We know that not everything that happens next year will be good–it just can’t be.  But we hope that after these 365 days have gone by, when we look back, we’ll be able to say that we enjoyed more Peace, more Justice, and more Freedom, as people and as a nation.

To go with these wishes, we’d like to use some traditional Basque songs that are presented in very different ways.

From Great Britain, Basque carols

 

First, we’d like to start off with two traditional Basque carols as sung by the Choir of King’s College in Cambridge.  If you’d like to know how these Basque carols came to make up a part of the British musical tradition, check out this article we wrote about them in January 2014.

The Infant King (Sing Lullaby) : Choir of Kings College, Cambridge

Gabriel’s Message : Choir of Kings College, Cambridge

They’re so popular in Great Britain that in 2014, The Telegraph listed “Gabriel’s Message” as the first on its list of A Carol A Day.

An interpretation of “Olentzaro” from 1952

In Tolosa in 1952, a version of “Olentzaro” as sung in the morning of January 1 by someone we Basques admire a lot: Alan Lomax.  He did it as part of a compilation of the sounds of the Basque Country (learn more about it here).

Horra, Horra, Gure Olentzaro (Tolosa, 1952)

Eguzkilore
Eguzkilorea. Senpere, Lapurdi. Euskal Herria. Stemless carline thistle or Silver thistle. Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle, Labourd. Basque Country. ( Garuna bor-bor)
Eguzkilorea. Senpere, Lapurdi. Euskal Herria. Stemless carline thistle or Silver thistle. Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle, Labourd. Basque Country. ( Garuna bor-bor)

And, as is becoming a tradition, we’ve chosen an image full of symbolism.  It’s a sunflower, or eguzkilorea, on everyone’s doors, the “doors of our Country”, which protect us from bad spirits, and help to bring us the Light that we need to find the right path to make 2017 a great year.

Zorionak Eta Urte Berri On!!!

 

 

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