Kunice Sea Szanty Festival

Kunice is a small town just 50km west of Wrocław and last Saturday we stopped by their annual sea szanty festival. Szanty, pronounced shanty, derived from the French word ‘chanter’, ‘to sing’, are shipboard working songs. It’s basically country music written and sang by sailors, and I’m pretty sure if you play a szanty song backwards the sail is not torn, your woman still awaits you on land, and there’s plenty of Rum left in the bottle…

We stopped by on the second day of the festival and missed all the well known groups that played the night before. But it was still a good show, and it was nice to get out of the city on one of the hottest days of the summer and dip in the cold lake nearby. Note to self: while it might seem like a good idea to jump off of the pier, think about your way back before making the leap. Bobbing around in the water felt great, getting back up the wooden deck not so much. Some guy pulled Karolina out of the water, of course, but I had to help myself, of course. Then again we could have just swam ashore that was just 20 feet away.

One of the bands we saw was a Wrocław’s own Znienacka Project (All of the Sudden Project) a name that is supposed to explain the creation of the band. You can hear some of their music here http://znienacka.art.pl/, they were a lot of fun to listen to. One thing I didn’t care for was the amount of time each band took for sound check. I’m no musician but I’ve been to plenty of concerts and never had to wait this long for bands to get their act together on stage. There was also some incident the night before with local hooligans and security was very tight with big dudes with itchy fists standing all around.

I believe this was the 20th year or so that this festival has been put on and I’d like to hit it up again next year, this time on their ‘main event’ night.

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