Profile: Milladoiro

By Manuel Carro

"Milladoiro" is the Galician name for the heaps of stones built by shepherds. It is also the name of a Galician folk music band with some 15 years of history.

Milladoiro play traditional Galician tunes, arranged to different instruments. They play as well compositions of their own and tunes of Breton, Scottish and Irish origin.

Why is this band here? Well, you've just read it: they play Celtic-like music. Celtic music (although in its more folky side) is highly appreciated in all Spain, and specially in Galicia.

Milladoiro is currently composed of:

Milladoiro changed their style as time passed, and even in a single CD very different tunes can be found. Their recordings range from plain traditional music to quite sophisticated renderings of more symphonic music by Galician composers. As the time passed, Milladoiro's melodies and arrangements become more complex. Thus, I'd recommend to start listening one of the four first recordings (see below). My preferred ones are "O Berro Seco", "Milladoiro 3" and "Solfafria".


Their first recording, with only two members. Simple in the form, but deep in contents.

A Galicia de Maeloc (Galicia in the times of Maeloc)
The full band plays here.

O Berro Seco (Dry Shout)

Milladoiro 3
Note that this is the 4th Milladoiro recording, but the 3rd with their present components.

Solfafria (not a Spanish or Galician word.)

Galicia no Pais das Maravillas (Galicia in Wonderland)

Castellum Honesti
This recording, for me, marks clearly a transition point in Milladoiro's style. Interesting for those who already know Galician music, because of the new treatment given to old melodies.

Galicia no Tempo (Galicia through the ages)
A suite composed for the exhibition "1000 years of Galicia".

Iacobus Magnus (The Great Jacob)
Jacob is one of the disciples of Jesus Christ, who is told to be buried in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela (Santiago comes from Saint Jacob, Compostela from the Latin Campus Stellae, "the Field of the Star"). Quoting from a newspaper:
"The last musical adventure of Milladoiro is, without any doubt, the most ambitious one in their long career. The band faced a long orchestral suite built on the huge musical background of their homeland. New music, jointly written by all the components of the bane, which combines their usual folk sounds with beautiful symphonic moments, with the collaboration of The English Chamber Orchestra. Iacobus Magnus is a piece of work with lots of feelings and love for the past and present of Galician music."
They have, at least, the sound track of a Spanish film, "Divinas Palabras", based on a novel by Valle-Inclan.

Availability of recordings

I know that Green Linnet carries two Milladoiro CDs: Castellum Honesti and Galicia no Tempo. A Milladoiro tune also appears in one Celtic Music compilation by Green Linnet. I know that two members of Milladoiro play in the Seville Suite, where Liam O'Flynn plays Uillean pipes.

Several of their albums may be ordered online from CD Universe, with information including track listings and downloadable audio samples.

More about Milladoiro

If you find this information interesting, drop me a mail telling me so; I'd be glad of knowing that. But don't ask me for more specific information, since there is little more I can say. Milladoiro can be reached by hard mail at:
 Apdo. correos 594
 Santiago de Compostela
 La Coru~na
This address appears in the back of their recordings, so I think I am not hurting anyone making it public here. I never met Milladoiro (but I've seen them live, and they are superb), so I can't talk to them personally.

Other links

*Ceolas Artists listings
*Ceolas home -----

Additions (GM)

Another album is "As Fadas de Estraqo Nome" (Fairies of a strange name), a live album recorded mostly in Buenos Aires.

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