Far from the old cliché of new drink in an aged bottle, singer and multi-instrumentalist Christine Lauterburg and her troupe have been on to something for some time and it finally got their leader overdue and well deserved recognition (more about that below). A mainstay at El Lokal and with a fanbase cultivated way beyond Switzerland, the groups traditional instrumentations prevail, hear what they’re able to seduce out of trad instruments like Trumpy, Halszither, Schwiizer Oergeli, Talerbecken and Buechel. But their respect for Swiss folk tradition doesn’t keep them from plowing new turf and influences of styles as varied as jazz, pop and world can be heard, intoxicating even to the most censorious ear. Their work works, creatively and with the public, and its blend reminds us that all music essentially was raised in the cradle of folk music.
Merely by her presence, larger than life Christine Lauterburg cuts quite a figure at center stage. And once she gets her ya-yas out, (applause invariably does that) she leads with rebellious spirit and spontaneous cloud splitting vocals, lusty intermezzos and jubilant “voodoo” yodeling (yes). Working solo and in different formations, this protean artist has slipped out of the shackles of what rigid traditionalism likes to dictate, she paints the traditional in brilliant new colors and embraces newer ideas and compositions. Yet “I play folk the way I feel it”, she says.
Christine Lauterburg is one of the recipients of the prestigious 2021 Schweizer Kulturpreis, bestowed to artists for their outstanding contribution to Swiss cultural life and presenting it on a global stage. Other recipients include Roli Mosimann, Viviane Chassot, Manuel Troller, Yilian Canizares, Tom Gabriel Fischer and Stephan Eicher (Grand Prix). They’re the company Christine keeps.
Oh yeah, about the band’s name: Bock is a billy goat and Doppelbock is not two billy goats but a potent, amber colored beer that packs a lethal double punch. So folks, tonight it’s bottoms up! ye hear?