The fusta (aka skirt)We usually play this tune acoustic, with bouzouki, frame drum and voice. It comes from an old album by Sofia Kollitiri and Makis Xristodolopoulos.

Here's an "electric" version inspired by the joyfully citric sounds of electro-saz and similar genres in the Balkans. Ingredients:

  • One singer (here, Estelle), singing in short stanzas punctuated by the instruments.
  • An amplified lute, with distorsion and maybe some fantastic effect. Here I used an electric bouzouki, slightly mashed through the stereo flanger of the Calf plugins.
  • A drum-machine (or of a human drummer striving to be as stable, precise and monotonous as a drum machine). I used the very good Salamander drumkit which plays through Linuxsampler.
  • Maybe a synthesizer. We wanted to keep it simple, so here there's just a sampled bass to give some depth to the harmony.

Electro-saz & co. are performed primarily live, in dancing settings. They support a lot of motivic improvisation, on both the voice and the lute. Here the tracks are recorded and mixed in Ardour DAW.

The rhythm is 3+2+2 in 7/8 meter. Fusta means "skirt" in both Greek and Romanian. The lyrics praise the effects of "Your skirt, Hellene", which sets the neighborhood on fire while you dance on the tables...