Plecat sa cânte la îngeri

I was very sad to learn this week that the singer Denisa Emilia Raducu, often referred to as Denisa Manelista, has died from liver disease. As the nickname “Manelista” suggests, Denisa was primarily a singer of manele, a musical genre often ridiculed and unappreciated by most Romanians. But Denisa was truly special. Born on December…

Music in Romania

When I first came to Romania, I was confronted with a wild and dazzling array of different kinds of music, most of which I had never heard before. It also didn’t help that I couldn’t understand the words either. In fact, due to my odd memory, I can tell you exactly which song I heard…

How Sick And Evil Everybody Is

Daca esti roman, blogpostu urmatorul e interzis! Nu-l citesti! All Romanians cover your eyes! Yes, for the other three of you in room (hi, Fred :P), this is yet another entry in the category of manele, although it is based off an older Romanian folk song. The video can be found here and is entitled…

Deconstructing Manele – Nu-i Carutza Ca Mertanu

I’ve been wanting to break down this song for a long time – it’s full of hilarious Gypsy slang and is a funny, silly song by Nicolae Guta. It has ALL the classic elements of a good Guta video: showing off money (wife slipping Euros in her pocket), total over the top brazenness (putting a…

Adrian Minune – The (ex) Emperor of Romania

Sadly, it’s increasingly rare to see Adi de Vito on Romanian TV these days but at one time he was the universally acclaimed Emperor of Romania. His real name on his passport is Adrian Simionescu, which is a fine and earthy name, but being the showbiz whiz he is (and what a showbiz whiz he…

Nicolae Guta, (Ex) King of all Romanians!

Yes ladies and gentlemen, time to learn about Nicolae Guţă (NEEK-OH-LIE GOOTSA), the man who was King of All Romanians before I came along. To understand Romania, you must understand who this man is and the kind of music he sings, known as manele. If you walk up to any normal Romanian and say “hey…