K'eselo Ensemble
Zemo & Kvemo Alvani

K’eselo Ensemble's namesake is the 13th century tower complex near Omalo, in the highland of Tusheti. K’eselo’s members are Tush women from the villages of Kvemo Alvani and Zemo Alvani. 

 

Each singer brings her own favorite songs to the group, and alongside the garmoni1 and panduri2 their voices weave together in a startlingly beautiful manner. Although they live in the plains of K’akheti, their songs strongly evoke the spirit of the mountains that are home to their ancestral roots.

 

Ensemble members: Elik’o Torghvaidze; Meri Jikhoshvili; Ana Lukhumaidze; Maqvala Rainauli; Iatamze Usharauli

 

1A button accordion that originated in Russia and plays an important role in the musical tradition of the Tush in Georgia, as well as in other regions throughout the Caucasus. Read more about the garmoni here

 

2A three-stringed, fretted lute common in all regions of northeastern Georgia. The instrument is most frequently used to accompany ballad singing.  Read more about the panduri here

K'eselo Ensemble - Ghrublebi
+ Song Info

A love song.

 

There is no English translation available for this song. If you are able to provide one, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.

+ Lyrics

There is no English translation available for this song. If you are able to provide one, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.

 

Ghrublebi

 

Ghrublebi daparpashoben

Rogorts sharbatit mtvralebi

Mal-mal nu mkhedav geqopa

Dabla dakhare tvalebi

Shen shemokhedvas nat’rulni

Shurit shemkhedven kalebi

 

Pikrma daghala vazhk’atsi

Daghala dabla dakhara

Shena khar chemo dzvirpaso

Pikrma sali k’lde daghara

Daghara daanaoch’a

Zed qoil aghar akhara

 

Gare tushura ts’vima ts’vims

Chvenats gavighebt gzasao

/Rad mechveneba aka khar

Leksebsats mats’vdi kalsao/

 

Net’avi damits’unebde

Damanebebde tavsao

Vivlidi lashar-ghelesa

Vazhebs vavlebdi tvalsao

Mashin khom sheveqrebodi

Chemi gunebis kmarsao

 

K'eselo Ensemble - Zezvais Tskheni (Gaprindaulis Simghera)
+ Song Info

This song is about Zezva Gaprindauli, a 17th century Tush hero. Gaprindauli is famous for gaining rights to winter pastures for his people in the valley of K'akheti after defeating the Persians in the Battle of Bakht'rioni.  The uprising inspired famous Georgian poets such as Vazha-Pshavela and Ak'ak'i Ts'ereteli to write epic poems and novels about the battle.

 

Read more about the legend of Zezva on Batsav, an informative site created by Alexander J.T. Bainbridge.

 

+ Lyrics

Zezvais Tskheni (Gaprindaulis Simghera)

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Gadmoviare shenisluli samch’edlos mtebi

Shublze papari gadits’ie karishkhlis prtebi

Ros dahk’ravdi da dadgeboda mt’vrisa namkeri

Dols dahk’ravdi da utskho zhrzholas its’qebdnen mtebi

 

Khitanis velze, he ramdenjer gitareshnia

Zaalnis gortan alamtanats idek p’irveli

Sheni khvikhvini gaismoda satatretshia

Tskheni iqavi tu lamazi laghi prinveli

 

Doghis belado bakht’rionis tsikhis k’edlebi

Khmlita da doghit shen da zezvas shegilets’niat

Isartelvis dros tsetskhls ak’vesdnen sheni nalebi

Ise dahkrodi sik’vdilits ver ts’amogets’ia

 

Alvanis velze gaaprine gaprindauli

T’akht’is bogirtan utsabedad gulgatangulo

Sheni gants’irva iqo zezvas danashauli

Pekhmardo lurjav mt’rebis siskhlit gats’itlebulo

 

Da dghesats tush k’atss ch’iri akvs tu zhamta salkhino

T’akht’is bogirtan ts’utit maints alagmavs kurans

Qants’i tu ar akvs uzangaze daiskhavs ghvinos

Moikhseniebs gagtsdeba da kuds daikhuravs

 

Translation:

 

Zezvai’s Horse (Gaprindauli's Song)1

 

Crossing the foggy mountains of Samch'edlo

You flipped your mane wings in a storm

There was a snowdrift of dust all around

The mountains trembled at the drumming of your hooves
 

At Khitani, how many times did you gallop through?

At Zaalnis flag you were the first to arrive

In Satatreti2 your neighing was heard

Were you really a horse or just a free bird?
 

You led the horserace to the walls of Bakht’rioni3

By the sword, you and Zezva won

Your horseshoes sparked with fire as you flew

So fast that even death couldn't follow

 

You sped Gaprindauli through the Alazani Valley

Suddently tiring at the Ottoman footbridge

It was Zezva’s offense that you sacrificed your life

Nimble-hooved horse, painted with the enemies' blood
 

And to this day, whether grieving or celebrating

A Tush man curbs his bay horse at the Ottoman footbridge

If there is no qants’i3 he pours wine into the stirrups

In honor of you he praises your name and tips his hat

 

 

1This song is about Zezva Gaprindauli's horse. Gaprindauli was a 17th century folklore hero from Tusheti, famous for having participated in the Battle of Bakht'rioni.

 

2Satatreti literally means ''The place of the Tatars,'' the name the Georgians use to refer to Azerbaijanis.

 

3A 17th century fortress, today in ruins, originally served as an outpost of the Persian Safavid Dynasty in the 1650’s, until Georgian highlanders and plainspeople joined together in a surprise attack in 1659.

 

4A hollowed-out wild goat horn used as a drinking vessel for special toasts. 

K'eselo Ensemble - Gakhsovs Ramdeni Otsneba Gvkonda
+ Song Info

A song of unrequited love.

+ Lyrics

Gakhsovs Ramdeni Otsneba Gvkonda

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Gakhsovs ramdeni otsneba gvkonda

Rogor gkhiblavda mshobeli mkhare

Iremis tsikhe evos k’oshk’ebi

Tsisk’ris ghimili qoveli tsismare

 

Otsnebad gvkonda ertad gvenakha

Lamazi mta da lamazi bari

Ts’aro etelda egho indurta

Da saotsnebo khevi bats’ari

 

Rogorts niaghvris shemdeg iebi

Dzvirpaso davrchit skhva da skhva tkhemze

Tumtsa vest’umret magram ushenod

Karits k’i skhva khmit mgheroda khevze

 

Zevit vutskerdit saqornis mts’vervals

Titkos tskhovrebas shenit vavsebdi

Naghvelma akats aikhsna bage

Dzvirpaso akats shen gamakhsendi

 

Translation:

 

Remember How Many Dreams We Had?

 

Remember how many dreams we had?

How the land of your ancestors charmed you?

The Deer Fortress and Evo’s Towers

And dawn smiling at you every morning...

 

We dreamt together

Of this beautiful mountain highland

Of the village called Indurta1

And the mystical Bats’ari Gorge2

 

Like violets after a torrential rain

We were separated from one another 

I visited the mountains, but without you

Even the wind sang differently in the gorge

 

While I looked up at Saqorni’s peak

Life seemed to be filled with you

There was great sadness, my darling

I will remember you here

 

1A Ts'ova-Tush village in Tusheti

 

2A gorge in K'akheti that borders Tusheti, the Batsara River is a tributar of the Alazani.

K'eselo Ensemble - Ts'qali Arghunis Davlie (Mzekalo)
+ Song Info

A love song.

 

To hear another version of this song, visit the page of Eldara Bukvaidze.

+ Lyrics

Ts’qali Arghunis Davlie (Mzekalo)

(scroll down for English translation)
 

Ts’qali arghunis davlie

Shen daginakhe, mze kalo

Shat’ilis tsikhes tsetskhls mivtsem

Tushet ts’agiqvan, mze kalo

 

Dek’is taiguls mogartmev

Lurjazed shegsvam, mze kalo

Tushetshi dagsvam dedoplad

Chemtan iknebi, mze kalo

 

Korts’ils gavmartav tushetshi

Arts’ivs gavapren mzestano

Maqrad movits’vev varsk’vlavebs

Shenzed vilotseb, mze kalo

 

Iebs dalalshi chagits’nav

Gvirgvins dagadgam, mze kalo

Khitanas k’urat’s shevutkvam

Jvars gadavits’er, mze kalo

 

Translation:

 

I Drank From the Waters of the Arghuni

 

I drank from the waters of the Arghuni1

And I saw you, sun woman

I will set fire to Shat’ili's fortress

Capture and take you to Tusheti

 

I will bring you a bouquet of rhododendron

And place you atop my gray horse

And crown you the queen of Tusheti

You will be with me forever, sun woman
 

We shall be married in Tusheti

I will fly an eagle to the sun

The stars will be our wedding party

And I will pray for you, sun woman

 

I will weave violets into your braid

And place a crown on your head

I promise to sacrifice a buffalo

And I will cross myself, sun woman

 

1The Argun River flows through Shat'ili and into Chechnya in the north Caucasus.

K'eselo Ensemble - Khanshi Shesulo Metskhvare
+ Song Info

A shepherd song.

+ Lyrics

Khanshi Shesulo Metskhvare

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Khanshi shesulo metskhvare

Isev gimgheris gulia

 

Mash davijero ar itsi

Dardi da siqvarulia

 

Mash davijero ara khar

Bedisgan dachagrulia

 

Mash davijero ara gakvs

Balghoba dak’argulia

 

Translation:

 

You Are Not Young Anymore, Shepherd

 

You are not young anymore, shepherd

But your heart still wants to sing

 

How can I believe

That you do not know grief and love?

 

How can I believe

That you have not been oppressed by fate?

 

How can I believe

That you have not lost your childhood?

K'eselo Ensemble - Aseti Ghame Mkholod Mtebshia
+ Song Info

A love song.

 

To hear another version of this song, visit the page of Amiran Zurabashvili.

+ Lyrics

Aseti Ghame Mkholod Mtebshia

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Aseti ghame mkholod mtebshia

Gulit minda da veghar vidzineb

Me shenze pikri shemomechvia

Gulit minda da veghar vitsileb

 

Mk’lavs da ar vitsi risi ts’qurvili

Otsnebisatvis tsaa maghali

Amodis mtvare siqvarulivit

Mudam dzveli da mudam akhali     

 

Gavtsker kheobebs mtvarit antebuls

Alaznis duduns bans adzlebs mtebi

Vt’k’bebi am tskerit da ase vambob

Es mkholod chventan tushetshi ari

 

Translation:

 

A Night Like This One
 

A night like this one is only in the mountains

I try to fall asleep to no avail

My sorrow over you consumes me

I want to get rid of it, but I can’t
 

It pains me that I don’t know what I thirst for

The sky is too high for my dreams

And the moonrise is like love:

It's forever old and forever new
 

I look over the moonlit ravines

The Alazani1 murmurs and the mountains hum

I take pleasure in this view, for this

This is only in our Tusheti

 

1The Andi Koysu River, referred to here as Tusheti's Alazani, needs to be differentiated from the Alazani River that flows through K'akheti, Georgia. The Tushetian river flows north of the Caucasus watershed into Dagestan, eventually running into the Sulak River which ends in the Caspian Sea.

K'eselo Ensemble - Ramdeni Khania
+ Song Info

A song of lost love.

+ Lyrics

Ramdeni Khania 

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Ramdeni khania es mtvare amodis

An es mze rad chadis, rad chadis, ushenod

Dgheebi midian, dgheebi mihkrian

Da me k’i vberdebi, vberdebi ushenod

 

Ramdeni khania, ramdeni khania

Ertmanets davedebt, mtashi tu barshia

Es guli daberda, gaige, daberda

Rom movk’vde, itsode, sul sheni bralia

 

Balghobis dgheebi, karivit ts’avida

Dghe gautenebliv, dghe ghames mieba

Ar tsodnit raime, tsodvas tu chaviden

Chem asak’s ar tsodna ar ep’at’ieba

 

Ramdeni khania es mtvare amodis

Es mtvare amodis, amodis, ushenod

Es guli daberda, gaige, daberda

Da me k’i vberdebi, vberdebi, ushenod

 

Translation:

 

How Many Times 

 

How many times has the moon risen

And the sun set without you?

Time passes and as the days run by

I too will get old without you

 

How long will we search for one another

In the mountains and the plains?

My heart has aged, know that it has aged

And if I die, it will be your fault entirely

 

Childhood days have blown away with the wind

A day without sunrise joins the night

If I have sinned without knowing it

Then my age knows no pardon

 

How many times has the moon risen?

The moon rises and rises without you

My heart has aged, know that it has aged

And I too will get old without you

K'eselo Ensemble - Kali Keria Bechavi
+ Song Info

+ Lyrics

Kali Keria Bechavi

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Kali keria bechavi

Sidam ra daiteseba

 

Visim ra sakhlshi sheva da

Vis k’eras aazhgherebsa

Vis ezosiad iktseva

Da mis bans daamshvenebsa

 

Visim ra varsk’vlav iktseva

Vistvis itsis k’rebs dilita

Vis ezos aamzianebs

Chit’ebis zhghara-zhghirita

 

Kali keria bechavi

Sidam ra daiteseba

 

Translation:

 

Woman, As Poor As Barley

 

Woman, as poor as barley

Where will she be sowed?
 

Whose house will she enter?

To whose heart will she bring joy?

Whose garden and roof

Will she make beautiful?

 

Whose star will she be?

Who will she wake for in the morning?

To whose yard will she bring sunshine

And the sound of singing birds?

 

Woman, as poor as barley

Where will she be sowed?

K'eselo Ensemble - Tusheto, Tushta Mshvenebav
+ Song Info

There is no English translation available for this song. If you are able to provide one, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.

+ Lyrics

There is no English translation available for this song. If you are able to provide one, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.

 

Tusheto, Tushta Mshvenebav

 

Tusheto, tushta mshvenebav

Shenim sitsotskhlit matsotskhla

Shenim qurebit gamodzgho

Shenim khat’ ghmertze malotsa

 

Shenim alersi maghirsa

E mag bunebis momtsao

Shenim sitsotskhlit matsotskhla

Shenim sitsotskhlit momk’lao

 

Shens mk’erdze mekna samara

Masmina qvavilt mgherao

Mtidan davardnil chanchkeri

Chems perkhtit aamgherao

K'eselo Ensemble - Mze-Chais Moginak’lise
+ Song Info

A song of unrequited love.

+ Lyrics

Mze-Chais Moginak’lise

(scroll down for English translation)

 

Mze-chais moginak’lise

Sul menat’rebi ganara

Qvela simgheris magier

Sevda vimghere kalama

 

Chumi churchulit gnat’robdi

Tsremlebm tvalebi danama

Jobs rom ar mqvandes nandobi

Ar momk’las shenistanama

 

Mezmana shen khma gavige

Qurs vugdeb pekhis khmasao

Chemi archeul iqavi

Masham rad erge skhvasao

 

Mze-chais moginak’lise

Sul menat’rebi ganara

Qvela simgheris magier

Sevda vimghere kalama

 

Translation:

 

The Sun is Setting and I Miss You

 

The sun is setting and I miss you

But I long for you always

Instead of songs

I sing only sadness, woman

 

I wish for you in a whisper

Tears wet my eyes

Though it's better not to regret

And not to be killed by you
 

I think it was your voice I heard

With the sound of footsteps

You were my choice

But now you belong to another
 

The sun is setting and I miss you

But I long for you always

Instead of songs

I sing only sadness, woman

K'eselo Ensemble - K'vlav Sich'abuk'is Nat'ruli
+ Song Info

There are no lyrics or translations available for this song. If you are able to provide any information, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.

+ Lyrics

There are no lyrics or translations available for this song. If you are able to provide any information, please include it in an email to aurelia@tsutisopeli.com and we will update the page.