Most if not all of this material was released on Balkanton in the 1970s and 1980s.
- Yordan Yotov (accordion)
- Ognyan Vassilev-Jimmy (tupan)
- Nedyalka Keranova (vocal)
- Ivan Hadjiiski (trumpet)
- Gruicho Doichev (vocal)
- Vulcho Ivanov (vocal)
- Ivan Mihov (violin)
- Velichka Stambolova (vocal)
- Bulgarian National Radio Folk Orchestra conducted by: Petko Radev, Anastas Naumov, and Kosta Kolev
The present programme is the first of a series of releases initiated by Gega New with the ambition to reveal the talent of some of Bulgaria's most famous folk musicians. Without aiming to go in chronological order, Gega New intends to present different folk artists and composers who have marked a path in the development of this genre of music. The first rеlеаsе features recordings of Petko Radev, clarinet, and Petko Dachev, accordion.
Petko Radev founded the Bulgarian National Radio Folk Orchestra in the 1970s. It made an immediate impression on listeners with its new musical sound, new type of improvisations and fascinating introductions. Even though he has an academic musical background, having graduated from the Bulgarian Academy of Music, Petko Radev applies the best devices of the Thracian instrumental tradition in his performing. Making use of his profound classical training, he transfers to the studio and stage the brilliant and sophisticated sound, combined with his free stylistic improvisations, which he has inherited from virtuoso musicians from his childhood. During the years when he plays and records folk music he is also a teacher in the Sofia Academy of Music. Many folk musicians learn from his talent and he himself is the creator of a school for interpreting of Bulgarian folklore. After working for 11 years as first clarinetist in the Milan La Scala, he came back to Bulgaria but never returned to folk music as a performer. Currently he has dedicated his life entirely to classical music and to his students. Nevertheless, his wide experience still makes him an important consultant to young musicians, and he can often be seen at all folk festivals and singing competitions.
Another famous musician who has played in the folk orchestra of the Bulgarian National Radio since its very creation is the accordionist Petko Dachev. While the Thracian wedding bands of the 1960s and 1970s abounded in perfect clarinetists, the accordion still had a subordinate place and the players used to keep to simpler improvisations. This is what makes Petko Dachev's vast creative method so prominent. In his improvisations he enriched the Strandja vocal mode of playing with a characteristic ornamental strain and in this way created a new Strandja-Thracian style, which quickly found its followers and has been widely exploited by musicians recently.
By establishing a new orchestra, Petko Radev and Petko Dachev attained a new mode in the interpretation of Bulgarian music folklore, which responds to the creative requirements of a whole generation of folk musicians. All renowned singers and instrumentalists have made recordings with them. This makes this programme so rich and various, featuring solo performances of artists, loved by the audience.