TransEuropean Partizan Jam

In 2020 Free Home is focusing on the legacy of the Antifascist Partisan Movement and it's cultural and political heritage.

What anti-racism, and true internationalism means to us today when anti-fascism has been condemned by the U.S. current president as a clandestine terrorist organisation? What can we learn from the European history of Resistance? How singing folk battle songs and playing music together can teach us to listen to each other better?

Trans-European Partisan Jam - is a new ongoing session (or rather a season) of Free Home conceived with the Moscow-based folk-punk Arkadiy Kots Band to advance our antifascist studies.

a partisan orchestra, WWII

Trans-European Partisan Jam is a collection of historical resistance songs from Italy, Spain, Yugoslavia, France, Roma and Jewish Peoples, Greece, and USSR. 

Arkadi Kots initiates this project as a new session of Free Home University in continuity with its ongoing collaboration with trade-unions, feminist, environmentalist, and migrant movements and communities, which has constituted a central focus throughout the past 10 years of the band’s activities. Arkadiy Kots considers folk music culture as a great pedagogical tool to share knowledge, express solidarity, and reinforce resistance. The translation is also an important instrument for the band, that rearranges, re-adapts and translates songs from many places, languages, cultures, and contexts of struggles, enhancing a spirit of togetherness and a sense of unity.

Arkadi Kots translated into the post-soviet Russian-speaking context, songs from Catalan, Shugnan, Bosnian, Polish, Greek, Ukrainian, Spanish, German, French, Italian, and English; adapted poems by Langston Hughes, Mike Yohansen, Luis Llach, Władysław Szlengel, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Joe Hill to name a few. The band also transforms the very process of making songs together into an ongoing self-educational process and into a form of social and political activism. 

Composed by non-professional musicians - the group’s ethos is to underline the significance and richness of folk music and popular traditions, as the possibility for different communities to voice their struggle, and sing together as a way to promote social justice and solidarity across places and contexts. 

Trans-European Partisan Jam invites comrade-musicians from Spain, Italy, Greece, former Yugoslavia, and France, singers and instrumentalists who play folk string instruments, reeds, brass, accordion, and who share our antifascist-socialist-feminist values.

Considering the limitation imposed by anti Covid policies, we will collaborate with those having the gear to record their parts at home, which later will be assembled and mastered by a sound engineer.

Here are some of the songs proposed for the recording so far, while the list is still growing:

Two more elements are going to accompany this season:

- one is the visual component which will be brought by the range of international artists who are invited to develop a video work to each song.

- and another one is a website and a publication of all the historical materials to contextualize each of the episodes featured in the TransEuropean Partizan Jam. Bringing together original lyrics, their traslations and historical and personal narratives.