If an individual does anything for 30 years, chances are they will get pretty good at it. In the case of Andre Brunet, he’s not only good at it…he’s great at it. “It” is playing the fiddle, and about 12 years ago, he joined up with two other great musicians to form De Temps Antan and bring high-energy performances to the world of Quebecois music.
“I started playing the fiddle at the age of nine,” said Brunet. “One of my uncles and my father would play together. My father was a guitarist. I had the chance to grow up with them, and hearing them every week. I was looking at my uncle playing the fiddle and he would just make everybody smile. I was five or six years old when I said to my mom that I would like to play the fiddle like my uncle.”
“The music comes from the old songs from the past. The songs that we have taken from our family, and from the archives,” said Brunet. “We go once or twice a year to the archives in Quebec City at the Université Laval and this is a big bang of all the songs. What De Temps Antan does is bring those songs into our own arrangement.”
The combination of traditional songs and new arrangements create a modern version of a longtime favorite. Add to that a newfound energy, and you have a recipe for what has made De Temps Antan such a success.
“One of the members of our group has played a lot of punk music,” said Brunet, “so he has a different vision of the arrangements. We all have a different vision of the music to bring new energy to the stage.”
De Temps Antan’s success has brought them all over the world, including tours in Russia, Europe, Malaysia, and America. The 2015 American Folk Festival will be the group’s first appearance on the Bangor Waterfront, although they did tour Maine a few years ago making five stops around the Pine Tree State.
“I was in Bangor many years ago at the American Folk Festival with another band, and I remember the jam sessions and all the beautiful music,” said Brunet. “We are expecting to meet a lot of fans of Quebecois music and people who will be ready to dance.”