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Intangible Pearls

by Zedashe

Boy: Lady, sun-like lady, I have known you for ten months, on the eleventh, everything went dark, one minute became a day, lady, sun-like lady, bring light back to my day, don’t winterize our meeting, don’t make me a prisoner. Girl: My sunlight, I am waiting for you everyday, torture has become more intensified; my day has turned to night Boy: Lady, sun-like lady, I have known you for ten months, on the eleventh, everything went dark, one minute became a day Girl : The sunlight enter, my day, my life, our fate was not to be together, our sun has darkened Boy: Lady, sun-like lady, the sun has darkened, they can’t keep us apart, they have angered the sky, we will travel together to the otherworld, my life (This is an old story of two lovers that were stoned to death, due to the adultery of the woman, there is still a pile of rocks marking the spot outside of Gori, in Karlti region called the Sunlike Lady’s Spot)
Si Vardisi 02:53
You surpass the rose. In Winter the rose loses its beauty. The nightingale can attest to the breach of your eternal beauty, that lives in your branches. You shine brighter and are more beautiful than the moon. God creates beauties such as you to test us in our struggles. You have a beautiful, body, lovely face, your hair is thick and curly. One can observe, and its true, better to live with love and struggle than, live without it. (This sung is sung in Megrelian)
On the 25th of December, Christ was born, the one that was the bearer of the news will be the recipient of great grace, May God Give you Joy!
When the sun set I started to miss it, I always miss you, don’t you know I always miss you, all of my songs became melancholy, quietly with whispers, I have missed you, and I have had many tears falling from my eyes, it would be better if I didn’t have such love unless I die for it. It seemed to me that I heard your voice, and I am listening for your footsteps, you were the one that I choose, and why did you end up another’s.
Da Vitartsa 01:24
Like the Lord, the Lord of all, the comforter of all, for whom the angels are sacrificing the gift, Alleluia (sung when the sacraments are being brought out from the alter during the Divine Liturgy)
This is sung commemorating a hero named Saluman Akhatsa, but it is in Abkhazian Language and we are still searching for a full translation.
Elesa 02:11
Men let’s go Elesa, let’s take the log out, come on boys lift it up Elesa (Elesa is short in Greek for Lord Have, Mercy on Us, some Greek words entered West Georgian dialects due to influence during Byzantine times)
Maqruli 02:13
We are coming with joy, we are bringing a red pheasant, I will throw you a handkerchief stitched with golden embroidery, were my heart will be wrapped inside, my heart is seared by its love for you, don’t forget me your poor lover. (The Maqruli is a melody traditionally sung at weddings here the singers celebrate in the first line the newlyweds, then shift focus to their personal love and its pursuit)
Agzevani 03:37
I will go to Agzevani for salt, I will bring salt crystals back, then I will first embrace my mother, than my child, then my wife, were are you going my friend teach me the way so I don’t make a wrong turn.
Shen Gigalob 02:42
We are chanting for you, bless you, we are grateful before you, our Lord, We ask you to intercede on our behalf our God (this is sung during the Divine Liturgy when the Sacraments are being blessed in the altar)
Chakrulo 05:26
You are sweet Kakheti, and you have the great wetlands of the Alazani. The deer in the meadows, and reeds near the Iori river banks. The pheasants are hiding in the brush and the beautiful flower the bull’s eye. I would give everything for you, I love your fields were the wild mountain goats graze, Your eyes are like blackberries and your cheeks are like the subtle skin of apples. You voice is like a dove’s, and I ask you to tell me at least once the truth. For your heart!
Lale 01:20
I have for a long time studied the stars in the sky, I recognized you in one of the stars, you were shinning brightly, you are so beautiful that not even the moon can resist you, the flirtatious smile, and shining beauty, one curly haired boy will soon become your slave, you cast me away like an old head covering, Now I don’t look at the stars any longer
Lerishi 02:22
This song was used to build up adrenalin in warriors before entering battle, the syllables sung don’t have any direct literal meaning, as far as we know, they were selected for their musical texture.
(this is a selection of various dance melodies from the Black Sea coastal region of Georgia that borders Turkey, Ajara, the last sequence of melodies, expresses in dance, scouting to find the enemies location, and reenacts dances moves that express aspects of war)
Brother what is better than brotherhood, a manly man that has many friends can’t be tainted by the enemy, You remember your brother when ten fight you and you are alone, when you don’t have any help to disperse the enemy, when sword clashes sword, the enemy has not been conquered, guns, swords, and shields, what is better than brotherhood, let’s stand side by side with interlocking arms, the heart senses the truth, then we can rip through with our swords, and level our enemies, for our victory!
Poor Ushgulian Villagers, the enemies are coming like leaves falling from the tree. The enemies are coming from the North Caucasus like leaves falling from the tree. Poor Ushgulian priests and peasants they are shaving your beards. The enemy is killing the great warriors amongst you and are using the weakest to carry heavy weights, and wood logs, they are killing your children and raping your wives. (Sung in Svan)
Hada i Juqva 03:26
Hada and Juva, the heroes from Sgobuledi (a village), you had a war. Your betrayers are moving from mountain to mountain in Svaneti , Hada and Juyva the heroes from Sgobuledi
A strange mystery, and glory that we behold, a cave has become similar to the heavens, the Virgin can be compared to the Cherubim, but we found a manger that became the world, in so much as Christ could fit in it, as one that is all encompassing, the one who we are chanting too.
Love brought you here from Bethlehem to Lazarus, you Godlike One resurrected him, the one that was in hell for four days, through your compassion. (This is sung on the great feast day of the Saturday of Lazarus, before Easter)
Alilo 02:07
We celebrate the birth of Christ, may God give us great days, our past and future
The truth is a worthy reason, and why we glorify you Birth-Giver of God (St. Mary) , the eternal one that we all want to emulate, the pure, Mother of us all. Compared to the Cherubim, and greater than the Seraphim, the eternal mother of the Word of God, the one and only Mother of God, with chanting we glorify you.
Vaxtanguri 02:52
Dance Melodies from the Eastern Georgian Highlands of Tusheti
Dance Melodies from the Central Georgian Highlands of Racha


Ketevan Mindorashvili ~ vocals + panduri (leader)
Shergil Pirtskhelani ~ vocals + chonguri
Tamila Sulkhanishvili ~ vocals
Tamuna Beridze ~ vocals + garmoni
Shmagi Pirtskhelani ~ vocals + chonguri
Aliko Matiashvili ~ vocals + chiboni
Nato Gorelishvili ~ vocals + dance
Erekle Kanchurishvili ~ vocals + dance
Tekla Taralashvili ~ dance
Vano Chincharuli ~ doli drum


released April 9, 2013

Electric Cowbell Records. Multiflora Productions

Produced : Zedashe + Multiflora
Engineered: Ty Russell, Pheasant’s Tears, Sighnaghi, Georgia
Mixed: Lance Koehler, Ty Russell + Marlysse Simmons, Minimum Wage, Richmond, VA
Mastered: Charlie Pilzer, Airshow Mastering, Takoma Park, MD 
Photos: Jonathan Wurdeman
Design: Bad Fort

Special Thanks: Pheasant’s Tears Winery + Living Roots Travel


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Zedashe Sighnaghi, Georgia

Zedashe Ensemble is a vocal and dance group based in the eastern medieval fortress city of Sighnaghi, Caucasus Georgia. Directed by Ketevan Mindorashvili, the ensemble was founded in the mid-1990’s to sing polyphonic chants, unique to Georgia, that were largely lost during the Communist era. ... more

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