Char Rothschild, the elder of the two brothers, gives new life to the word multi-instrumentalist. In addition to singing, he plays trumpet, guitar, banjo, bass, keyboards, accordion, clarinet, trombone, saz (a type of Turkish lute), ney (Turkish flute), gaida (Bulgarian bagpipes), percussion, and more. Behind each of these instruments is a story and often a journey. He has played in Tokyo with the Old Moscow Circus, toured Australia with the Afro-funk band Panjea, and performed with countless other projects regionally. He is also a gifted songwriter and accompanist who has written music for many theatrical productions. Char graduated with a BFA in Contemporary Music from the College of Santa Fe.
Robby Rothschild, the younger of the two, plays drum set, percussion, hurdy gurdy, bouzouki, mandolin, kora (West African harp), as well as singing. He began playing piano and drums at an age of eight, and has never been the same since. As a percussionist, he has been deeply influenced by the rhythms of West Africa . He has studied djembe in Mali and the United States, and has toured and recorded internationally with Kip Winger, Panjea, and Ottmar Liebert. Robby is a talented composer - his places of study include the New England Conservatory of Music and the College of Santa Fe's Contemporary Music Program, where he also graduated with a BFA.
"This music is a shrine to our mythology, as brothers and as people," says Robby. And although the combination of cultures is unusual, they don't consider themselves the first to attempt such alchemy.
"Traditions have always come together. But it's never been done in a laboratory, throwing a bunch of dry ingredients together and measuring what happens. It's always been done around a fire, and the solvent that makes the ingredients react is right there in the hearts and hands of the people who play it," says Char Rothschild.
"I think we have work to do here. We love music from all over the globe. Our job is to bring what we've found home and share it with our people, and at the same time to represent our home and La Querencia of New Mexico to the rest of the world," says Robby.
"We're people who live in the world, and we're trying to continue the stories of our ancestors, following the tracks of those old roads into the future," Char concludes. "If two cultures can come together in a song, then there's hope."
Char and Robby are joined live by renowned bassist Jon Gagan on upright and electric bass. Their show is a lively mixture of ceremony and irreverence, of exuberance and reflection. Beneath all of these unlikely marriages, a certain warmth remains to unify their sound and their message. In a time when most music has become so brightly polished that no one can see inside, Round Mountain presents a rare rough gem of humanity that glows from within.
Check out the artist's website:
2. Raised Eyes
3. You Cannot Wait
4. The First Fire
5. The Dam
6. The Burning Braid
7. The Queen
9. The Fiery Light
10. Shine More Light on the Trees
11. Don't Let it End
12. St. Anthony's Garden