[Typographical note: I can't seem to produce the c-caron ('hacek') that should go instead of the regular 'c' in Bregovic's name on this machine. Forgive my computer, it knows not what it does]
Last Saturday, I went to see Goran Bregovic and his "Wedding and Funeral Band" in a music concert in my home town of Ra'anana. Bregovic and his band were supported by an orchestra from Poznen, Poland, three women singers from Sofia, Bulgaria, and a men's choir from (I think) Croatia.
I was given two invitation tickets by my father, who received them but did not intend to go. The ticket said "Spring (and summer) Rite - Goran Bregovic". I didn't recognize Bregovic's name, and figured it's some Yugoslavian conductor come to perform Stravinsky's Spring Rite.
When I got to the Ra'anana amphitheater, I realized I figured wrong. The place had signs proclaiming a "World Music Festival" that is apparently in progress. The concert was absolutely wonderful. Bregovic makes music that's a heartwarming blend of ethnic Serbian, Croatian, and Gypsy music. The concert alternated between energetic, happy pieces and more melancholy tunes, as well as some music Bregovic had composed for soundtracks. It was only after the concert that I learned that Bregovic is rather famous, and that he has composed the soundtracks for some of Emir Kusturica's films, such as Black Cat, White Cat, which I really liked.
The piecemeal ensemble performed remarkably well, and I could not spot a single fault in their coordination and timing. The musicians were apt and played vivaciously, and there was great rejoice. The audience (the place was packed end-to-end) was very enthusiastic, and a good time was had by all.
I highly recommend Bregovic's music, if you can stomach so-called "world music" at all. His live performance was significantly more exciting than his recorded music on the collection CD I purchased at the concert, though.