Urban Trad

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Soetkin Collier (left), Yves Barbieux, Veronica Codesal

Urban Trad is a Belgian folk music group, consisting of both Flemish and French speaking people and a close connection with Galicia.


  • Yves Barbieux: flutes and Galician bagpipe
  • Veronica Codesal: vocals
  • Soetkin Collier: vocals
  • Sophie Cavez (replaced Didier Laloy): diatonic accordion
  • Philip Masure: acoustic guitar
  • Michel Morvan: drums (died 3 July 2010)
  • Dirk Naessens: violin
  • Marie-Sophie Talbot: vocals, piano and percussions (no longer with the band)
  • Cedric Waterschoot: bass


As the name indicates, Urban Trad is a traditionally-inspired music band, deeply rooted in the 21st century. The acoustic instruments (accordion, violin, flutes, etc.) and the singing are supported by a rhythmic section and modern stuff which endow the group with its unique colour: a music which suits a rock concert and a cultural center. The vigor and the musical quality, which emanate from the songs, catch on to people of all ages and cultural backgrounds.[citation needed]

The project started in May 2000, when Yves Barbieux gathered to create their first album, One-o-Four, a score of artists together, already well known in the traditional Belgian stage (Orion, Luc Pilartz, Perry Rose, Tom Theuns, Didier Laloy).

In the beginning, it was meant to be just an album project, but the success encountered during the promotional concerts encouraged Barbieux in adding a public dimension to Urban Trad with other artists. It was during the Eurosong festival in Latvia in May 2003 that Urban Trad wins the hearts of the general public. "Sanomi", a song performed in an imaginary language (thus universal), received a surprising second place, just two points from the Turkish winner.

Further to this performance, success became a habit: more than 30 000 copies of second album Kerua (and single "Sanomi") were sold in Belgium; the CD was released in several European countries, and the concerts are increasing in Belgium and abroad (Louisiana, The Czech Republic, The Netherlands, Spain…)

Spring 2004 was a turning point: while keeping the modern touch which has made the band’s success, the new repertory is not any longer exclusively Celtic-inspired. Barbieux has indeed drawn his inspiration from all over Europe (Scandinavia, France, Spain, Eastern countries, etc.). The third record, Elem whose production has been left in Simon Emmerson’s hands, from the English group Afro Celts Sound System was released in 2004.

In 2012 the band decided take a break, after a series of farewell concerts.

Eurovision Song Contest[edit]

Urban Trad participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 2003, where they ended second with the song "Sanomi", a modern folk[clarification needed] song with vocals in an imaginary language. A few months before the contest, the selectors dropped singer Soetkin Collier on the advice of the Belgian security services, who claimed that she'd had extreme right sympathies in the past.[1] Collier vigorously denied the claims, and later that year after an investigation it was concluded that the accusations were exaggerated and based on outdated information.

As a result of this, two versions of the song exist on record. One was the standard album version (4:08) and another version was released on single and on the Eurovision Song Contest 2003 collaboration album. Often known as the Eurovision edit, it cut down to 3:01 and it had Soetkin Collier's vocals removed.

Full albums[edit]

  • One o Four (2001)
    • 1. Subway Call
    • 2. Avreel
    • 3. La Belle Jig
    • 4. Vodka Time
    • 5. Waltzing Dranouter
    • 6. Basement Scotch
    • 7. Baline
    • 8. Brass Corto
    • 9. Bamboo
    • 10. Free Wheel
    • 11. Rap A Doo
    • 12. Mecanix (Who'S Who) (after Waltzing Dranouter)
  • Kerua (2003)
    • 1. Mecanix Remix
    • 2. Kerua
    • 3. Sanomi
    • 4. Il Est Bien Temps
    • 5. Lampang
    • 6. Berim Dance
    • 7. Quimper - Moscou
    • 8. Get Reel
    • 9. The Roses
    • 10. Medina
    • 11. Leina Street
    • 12. Alto
    • 13. Sanomi (Eurovision Edit)
    • 14. Galicia
  • Elem (2004)
    • 1. Rodgrod Med Flode
    • 2. De Luz, Amor Y Nada
    • 3. Vigo
    • 4. Jorden/Terra
    • 5. Bourrée d'Erasme
    • 6. De L'Air
    • 7. Valse
    • 8. Two Hornpipes
    • 9. Zout
    • 10. Mind the Gap
    • 11. V.T. Intro
    • 12. Vodka Time (Mass'Mix)
    • 13. Bonus : Lampang/Mideau Rhemila (live)
  • Erbalunga (2007)
    • 1. Sans garde-fou
    • 2. Hedningarden
    • 3. Oh la belle
    • 4. Le serpent
    • 5. Erbalunga
    • 6. Fields of Deeley
    • 7. L’olivier
    • 8. Bourrée Tappen
    • 9. Accovi / Onderweg
    • 10. Polaire
    • 11. Noite Longa
    • 12. Scottiche de la tête
    • 13. Asturiana
    • 14. A Terra
    • 15. Diama Den (bonus)
Preceded by
Sergio & The Ladies
with Sister
Belgium in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
with 1 Life


  1. ^ "Belgium bans 'neo-Nazi' Eurovision singer", 21 Feb 2003, The Telegraph

External links[edit]