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A Gypsy Legend

Saban Bajramovic

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Album Review

Sadan Bajramovic is definitely an old-school gypsy singer, with several decades of experience behind him. But don't confuse age with taking it easy. His voice might not have the sharp edge it once did, but the energy is quite apparent, and there's no lack of commitment to the music, especially as he's backed by one of the best gypsy groups around on this set of mostly well-known gypsy songs. His version of "Djelem" is nothing short of stunning, but an emotional spin on an old favorite. But it's just one among many jewels here, with everything electrifying, and the backing, mixing Rom music with some jazz, is every bit as effective as the singing. But it's the final cut, "Pitao Sam Malog Puza," which is the real killer, with Bajramovic letting loose some fearsome howls and singing as if his life depended on it. Female gypsy singers have received a fair amount of notice in the past. If you want to hear one of the male greats, this is the place.

Biography

Born: 16 April 1936 in Nis, Yugoslavia

Genre: World

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Serbian-born Saban Bajramovic was the most popular and influential Romany singer of his generation — a larger-than-life figure renowned for his devotion to excess and abandon, his potently soulful voice embodied the emotional extremes of the modern Balkan experience. Born in Nis, Yugoslavia, on April 16, 1936, Bajramovic was orphaned during World War II, and quit school only four years into his education. Life...
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A Gypsy Legend, Saban Bajramovic
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