Le Vent du Nord (Canada)
Le Vent du Nord (The North Wind) is a leading force in Québec’s progressive francophone folk movement. The highly acclaimed band’s vast repertoire draws on both traditional sources and original compositions, enhancing its hard-driving music (rooted in the Celtic diaspora) with a broad range of global influences. Featuring button accordion (Réjean Brunet), guitar (Simon Beaudry) and fiddle (Olivier Demers and André Brunet), LVD’s sound is defined by the hurdy-gurdy (Nicolas Boulerice), which adds an earthy, rough-hewn flavor to even the most buoyant dance tunes.
Since their inception in 2002, Le Vent du Nord have enjoyed meteoric success. They have performed over 1,900 concerts on five continents (including regular appearances at TD Sunfest’s Le village québécois and a symphonic program at last February’s Celtic Connections festival in Glasgow, Scotland) and racked up many prestigious honors, including two JUNOS. The quintet’s most recent (10th) album is Territoires. Voted a Songlines Magazine (UK) “Top of the World Selection” and nominated for a 2020 Canadian Folk Music Award, it is another example of LVD’s belief in the power of cultural differences to preserve the richness of mankind.
For Le Vent du Nord, reinterpreting traditional music has always involved re-imagining Quebec’s identity and its place in the world. Explains Boulerice: “We invent new ways to be part of North America and be Québécois. I don’t know how (long) we will need to fight, but we will fight anyway. But the Quebec way: with the violin and the song.”