THE LEMON BUCKET ORKESTRA
From Toronto to New York, Budapest to Berlin, audiences around the world are hailing the Lemon Bucket Orkestra as folk music revolutionaries. Since their birth three years ago, the band has grown from its initial quartet of buskers to a fifteen-piece guerrilla folk force with an army of grass roots followers and mainstream fans at home and abroad.
Those discovering the band for the first time quickly realize that their shows are more than concerts; they’re wild, joyful experiences rarely contained by four walls; they’re celebrations of tradition and culture expressed with an explosive punk spirit; they’re ecstatic street parades that erupt from the collision of nostalgia and imagination.
The LBO enjoyed worldwide media attention last summer after playing klezmer music on a delayed Air Canada flight en route to a three week tour of Romania-- the video garnered 250,000+ YouTube hits and was covered by CNN, New York Times, Fox News, Huffington Post, Jimmy Kimmel, CBC, CTV, The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, and more.
2012 was a monumental year for LBO: they released their debut full-length album Lume, Lume (produced by Michael Phillip Wojewoda at Toronto’s Revolution Recording), toured eight countries in Europe and North America, shared stages with the most renowned artists in their genre (Shantel and the Bucovina Club Orkestar, Taraf de Haidouks, and Fanfare Ciocarlia, among others), and were featured performers in Midwinter Night: Sacred and Profane Rituals at the legendary LaMaMa Theater in New York City.
This was nothing short of expected to fans of the band in their hometown of Toronto, who bought up over 4,000 copies of the band’s debut EP Cheeky last year, and eagerly follow the band to every corner of urban space: last August, LBO drew a 500 person crowd into the Toronto subway system and took them to cavernous Union Station, where they performed an acoustic set in commemoration of the Eastern Seaboard blackout of 2003. Not surprisingly, they are a founding member of infamous Toronto urban folk collective, Fedora Upside-Down.
Lume, Lume features thirteen gritty, high-energy arrangements (and one secret track) of folk songs from across Eastern Europe. “These traditional songs have been played for generations in various arrangements--they’ve travelled with musicians to different lands and have mutated and adapted constantly,” says mohawked ringleader Mark Marczyk, who was teaching English and dancing Argentinian tango in Ukraine when he fell in with the street musicians who inspired him to form the Lemon Bucket Orkestra. “But there is a common thread-- they tell stories and carry emotions that bring people together... and that’s something the urban landscape really needs.”