About Fishtank Ensemble
Fishtank Ensemble is a band that offers a unique blend of Gypsy, Balkan, Flamenco, Klezmer and original tunes. The arrangements are always surprising and include instruments from many countries such as violin, accordion, flamenco and gypsy jazz guitar, shamisen, bass, saw and voice. From the smokey cafes of Bucharest to the Gypsy caravans of yesterday, Fishtank Ensemble evokes the spirit of a past age with the sounds of tomorrow.
A series of chance occurrences caused the members of what would become Fishtank Ensemble to meet in an Oakland performance space called ‘The Fishtank’ in the spring of 2005. After 3 short weeks together, they recorded their debut album,Super Raoul. ‘Raoul’ is a gypsy slang term for ‘cool’. The album, recorded live at ‘the fishtank’ and at The Cayuga Vault in Santa Cruz showcases the bands diverse range of styles and influences. In late 2005 the band took to the road, performing up and down the west coast USA for delighted audiences everywhere. http://www.fishtankensemble.com
“For those in need of having their dervish whirled, the Bay Area's Fishtank Ensemble are the rompin', stompin' leaders of cross-pollinated Gypsy music. French fiddler Fabrice Martinez paid dues gigging Europe in a mule-drawn caravan, including stints in Romani villages. El Douje is the master of 21st-century flamenco guitar, while Aaron Seeman is the king of punk accordion. Audience eyes tend to focus on Ursula Knudson, not only for her virtuosic saw playing and a voice that sings in octaves not yet invented, but also for her sensual beauty. The mix includes a Japanese shamisen player and a rock-bottom upright bassist, and we have a young band that is one of the most thrilling live acts on the planet.” - Michael Simmons, LA Weekly