Estbel joins together the best Estonia and Belgium have to offer. On one side you get the Nordic beauty and serenity, on the other the finest sons of the heartland of European folk music.
In February 2016 the Dhoore brothers and two Estonian nightingales spent a week in Saaremaa looking for a common sound, vision and feeling. They found it and only a year later presented their first album Saar/Island - an homage to where it all started.
The album, like Estbel itself, is full of rare original tunes combining compelling Flemish melodies and beautiful Estonian singing. This is a combination you have to hear to believe!
Leana Vapper-Dhoore is a singer and plays both the Estonian and Low D pipes. As a teenager she took part in the Estonian Ethno music camps and frequently visited the Viljandi Folk Music Festival, which heightened her interest in folk music. From 2006 to 2015 she was living in Flanders where she learned to play the Flemish bagpipes and met Hartwin during jam sessions and concerts.
Maris Pihlap is a violin player, singer and songwriter active in many different genres. She started to learn Estonian traditional violin tunes even before classical training, so her playing style is deeply rooted in Estonian tradition. She is devoted to writing songs in Estonian language and tastefully combining tradition with modern elements such as jazz harmony and hiphop rythm grooves. She also studies rythm music at the University of Tartu Viljandi Culture Academy.
Hartwin and Ward Dhoore are the driving force of Estbel. Hartwin has been playing the diatonic accordion for over ten years and is respected and known for his contemporary instrumental compositions. Ward’s instrument is the acoustic DADGAD-tuned guitar. Ward has a talent for arranging music. He likes effects and experiments with loops.
Estbel unites traditionalists and indie-lovers, the young and the elderly. Party time for everyone!
“Their music is full of magical realism – as if Gabriel Garcia Marquez were walking with Björk, frisking in a northern landscape.”
- Ruben Bertrands, Het Nieuwsblad, Belgium
“Magical songs and beautiful melodies created by four fantastic musicians!”
- Steven Vanderaspoilden, Folk Magazine, Belgium
Celtic Connections // UK
Viljandi Folkfestival // Estonia
Tallinn Music Week // Estonia
Dranouter Festival // Belgium
Kaustinen Folkfestival // Finland
Korrö Folkmusic Festival // Sweden
Linköping Folkmusikfestival // Sweden