Old Alsatian texts in music on Wêmuot, the new EP by Éric Kaija Guerrier and Carole Werner

An amazing musical project: Wêmuot, Wehmüet in “modern” Alsatian, a form of melancholy, of nostalgia, the result of an atypical collaboration between 2 Alsatians, on the one hand the prolific Eric Kaija Guerrier, French writer, composer, arranger and musician, co -founder of the Weeper Circus, and on the other Carole Werner, doctoral student in dialectology and ATER at the University of Strasbourg. So why do you need a researcher for this project? Because in a patrimonial boost, they decided to set to music texts by ancient authors in their language, read by Carole Werner, accompanied by musical improvisations by Eric Kaija Guerrier.

You did not understand anything? It is normal, here is a text by Otfrit von Weissenburg (born in 790 died in 870), considered the first poet in the Germanic language, who translated the Bible into the language of the Franks, one of the first writings in what can be considered like the language of the Rhine Valley. And it comes from Wissembourg.

This is a text of the minnesänger, in French, we say troubadour Reinmar von Hagenau, it is from the 12th century. Extract. And here is the rock-star of the stage, Gottfried von Strassburg, also a troubadour and contemporary of the previous one, who had readapted Tristan and Yseult in Germanic, is also an extract of the work that is read here.

We come to the mystics, such as Johannes Tauler, from the fourteenth century, a disciple of Meister Eckhart.

The celebrated moralist Sebastian Brant, world famous for his Ship of Fools, of which here is an extract in the language of the 16th century.

And Thomas Murner, satirical monk of the 16th century, a great enemy of Luther. They were all Alsatians, they spoke our Müedersproch, listen how the language evolved.

To fully understand what it is about, find the translations of the texts on Eric Kaija Guerrier’s site, ekguerrier dot com, and these 6 titles are found on Deezer, on Spotify, on Apple Music. It is 100% local, the recording, mixing and mastering was done by Frank-Jean Schmidt, from the Barbarossa studio in Wintershouse.

Eric Kaija Guerrier launches an EP dedicated to the theme of texts by Alsatian authors from the 9th to the 16th centuries. His desire to preserve the ancient oral heritage is associated with improvised music.

References :

  • Otfrit von Weissenburg (790-870) (first poet in the Germanic language)
  • Reinmar von Hagenau (1150-1205) (minnesänger – troubadour)
  • Gottfried von Strassburg (1180-1215) (minnesänger – troubadour)
  • Johannes Tauler (1300-1361) (mystic)
  • Sebastian Brant (1494-1521) (moralist)
  • Thomas Murner (1475-1537) (satirist)

Find the translations of the texts on Eric Kaija Guerrier’s site.

Find the album on Deezer.

Find the album on Spotify.

Find the album in Apple Music.

Texts: public domain.

Guitars, music, arrangements and production: Éric Kaija Guerrier.

Recitatives in Old High German (750-1050), Middle High German (1050-1350), and Early High German (1350-1650): Carole Werner.

Recording, mixing and mastering: Frank-Jean Schmidt, Barberousse studio, Wintershouse.

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