Often times, the best combinations are the ones you least expect. It’s similar to the principles of Yin and Yang and that all things exist as inseparable and contradictory opposites, for example, female-male, dark-light and old-young.
Now, take the concept and apply it to music and then apply it to different time periods. Still with us? Good. We’re talking about the latest show we experienced as part of the Onassis Festival, Xylouris White.
Xylouris White is firmly rooted in the past and future. Playing Cretan music of original and traditional composition, the band consists of Georgios Xylouris on Cretan laouto and vocals and Jim White on drum kit. Xylouris is known and loved by Cretans and Greeks at home and abroad and has been playing professionally from age 12. Jim White is an Australian drummer known and loved throughout the world as the drummer of Dirty Three, Venom P Stinger, and now Xylouris White. For the last four years these two men have been performing as Xylouris White, the culmination of 25 years of friendship forged through music and place.
The performance was held at Joe’s Pub and for 90 minutes, we were presented with a show that we could have never predicted. There were interwoven elements of culture and familiarity all while experiencing something we have never seen or heard before.
Was it a Greek concert? No. Was it a drummer performance? Absolutely not. It was an intimate room that was actively engaged for 90 minutes while we went on a journey through New York City, Crete, Greece and Australia.
We found it to be a mix of traditional and original music, which is not quite Cretan folk music, not exactly rock, and despite the ‘jam session’ nature of the dynamic, it’s not jazz either. Sounds confusing but it meshes into something that will have you searching for them on YouTube for weeks.