The Flaming Czars

500 mph East European Folk on accordion and guitar/mandolin

Back in the early part of the last decade, Geoffthepianist and I met while playing in  rock'n'roll/blues pub bands. One day in an idle moment at a rehearsal, he began playing "Katyusha". "Hey, that's Katyusha!" I said. "Yeah, how do you know that?" he replied. It became apparent that we both loved East European folk music, he through learning a lot of EE folk tunes on accordion, me through the very excellent Ukrainians.

So in 2006 we amassed a set of very fast East European folk tunes on accordion and acoustic guitar, and set about playing them at folk clubs across Sussex, and various venues around London and beyond.

Wherever we played, people would look on with jaws agape, partly because we stood out a mile from the usual English folk or American blues you tend to find at folk clubs (nothing wrong with either of those genres, by the way) and partly because of the insane tempos of most of the tunes.

Between 2006 and 2011 we played at folk clubs across Sussex, and indeed started our own one in Burgess Hill, played festivals in Leytonstone, Uckfield, and best of all made 3 appearances at the excellent Endorse It In Dorset festival. We also played the Borderline and a bunch of other venues across London. 

At the moment we are on hiatus, as Geoff is living in China (that 10,000 mile gap makes rehearsing a bit difficult, not to mention gigging), but whenever we're in the same hemisphere we whip out the old accordion and git and rev up the engine.

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West Sussex, United Kingdom
Upside Down Guitar, Bass, Uke, Mandolin, Banjo, Bouzouki and Cigar Box Git. In 1984 I picked up a right handed bass guitar, but being left handed, turned it upside down and taught myself to play cackhanded. Seeing no reason to change this, I have since applied the same logic to all other stringed instruments (doesn't work so well for piano). Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to play with upwards of 25 top combos, and have been lucky enough to play gigs in England, Scotland, Wales, France, Belgium, NL, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Spain & the US, releasing a number of records along the way. Further details can be found on the various pages of this site. I am also a quizmaster, record spinner, radio presenter and Scrabble obsessive. Contact: eviljackmcdeath[at]yahoo[dot]co[dot]uk