CEILI MOSS is an acoustic folk-rock band from Belgium founded in 1996. We describe ourselves as "acoustic folk-rock with guts and melodies, with a Northern European edge, not afraid of colouring a bit outside of the lines". Perhaps it is Genevieve Williams from Widdershins who described us best : "They are not as punk as The Pogues, but they have a bit of that attitude and it gives them an edge many folk groups lack". Other frequently heard comparisons are Ambrozijn, Tri Yann, Jaune Toujours, Les Ogres de Barback, the old Clannad...
Like many, we started with (and still enjoy playing) a "Spanish drunken Danny rover of the County Down in the jar" repertoire, we have nevertheless constantly broadened our musical spectrum: Celtic, Flanders, Scandinavia, klezmer, medieval music, French chanson, Eastern Europe, ska, Balkanbeat, kleinkunst, singer-songwriter, blues, we take whatever we like, put it in our cauldron and whoever says it's not "orthodox" or "as it should be" gets a smack bottom! We play an approximately 2/3-1/3 mix of our own tunes sung in English, French or Dutch, and of mistreated traditionals.
What more ? We're probably not going to be 'bigger than Oasis', but our warm and heartfelt music has generally been well received everywhere we've played. When performing live, we are more in it for the energy and sincerity than for the academically irreproachable reproduction of the genre's schemes.
It all started in Namur, a picturesque city in the south of Belgium, in the fall of 1996. Benjamin Delforge, Laurent Leemans, Emmanuelle Miserrocchi and Yannick Sterpin started a folk band, merely to have fun and a few free pints...
The band had its coming and goings: Emmanuelle left in 1997, Yves Van Elst and Michael Goffioul joined the same year, we first had a drummer named Pierre Poucet, who left in 2004 and was replaced by Jeremy Pinera, after Emmanuelle, we remained for a time without fiddler until we met Jean-FranÃois Durdu in 2001. He stayed until 2006, and was replaced by Mathieu Collard. Vocalist Sophie Toth also was one of us from 2003 to 2007. And Yannick Sterpin deprived us of his guitar, harmonica and vocal skills in 2006. Michael will be leaving at the end of 2008, so we hired Thibaud Misson and his double bass and also well-known (in Belgium) guitarist Stephane Jalhay. Early in 2009, it's benjamin who has decided to take break to finish his studies.
Through these years, we started playing in pubs, then small venues, then small festivals, and have gradually established a much more than decent reputation as a live act in Belgium and the neighbouring regions. We also have released four self-produced CDs: "be there & be drunk!" in 2001, "glad to find you well" in 2003, "on the shore" in 2006 and the brand new "la vie sent quoi?", which is available since september 2010.
We play live about twice a month. It's what it's all about, actually.
The Pogues, The Chieftains, The Dubliners, Alan Stivell, Ambrozijn, Kadril, The Waterboys, The Levellers, the old Clannad, Altan, Ewan MacColl, Tri Yann, Les Ogres de Barback... but we also listen a lot to stuff like Morissey, Echo & The Bunnymen, Led Zeppelin, Noir Desir, The Cure, so I guess it had to influence us somehow.
Acoustic 12- and 6-strings guitars, electric guitar, transverse flute, fiddle, drums, doedelzak, double bass, various percussions
Always look on the bright side of life!