Gentiane was founded in France in the early seventies by Jean Blanchard, Bernard Blanc, Emmanuelle Parrenin, Gerard Lavigne and Denis Gasser, names not unfamiliar to the fans of French music. They wanted something special: a record with traditional music from the Auvergne, but with unconvential and sophisticated arrangements.
We know now what happened after this album was released: almost all of these tunes became classics, to be played by every bagpipe, hurdy-gurdy or accordeon player in Europe in the 70s and 80s (in the Netherlands they were standard repertoire on many a session). The demand for this album continued long after Cezame deleted it.
The musicians all pursued their careers. Jean Blanchard en Bernard Blanc formed La Bamboche, Emmanuelle Parrenin joined Melusine, and Gerard Lavigne played bass with many a French band varying from folk to rock.
Even almost twenty years after its original release, this record is as fascinating and inspiring as when it was released. Needless to say we are proud to have acquired the rights to this album and add it to our Folk Classics Series.