Recalling the 1573 Peasants Revolt Through Music: Meet Sage

Total Croatia News

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Photo credit - Janett Vučeta

January 25, 2020 – Meet Sage, a modern band finding inspiration in the Peasants Revolt of 1573. 

Enio Vučeta, guitarist and back vocalist in the band Sage, national archery champion and knight, reveals to us how he connected the music world with the world of reenactment.

His first touch with music was at the age of 9 when he enrolled in Music school. His choice was a guitar, and it seems as though he didn’t make the wrong choice. Enio is today a guitarist and backing vocalist for the band Sage, a group which recounts history.

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If we go back to 1982 and read the advertisements in Večernji List, we would see Enio’s ad: “I’m looking for musicians for my band.” At that time, Enio was in the military. When he returned in the autumn of 1983, some musicians contacted him, and so they started as a band named “Legija”. They produced a few songs, held concerts all over former Yugoslavia, produced a vinyl album for PGP RBT (a record label from Belgrade). “Legija” was a thing for quite an extended period, but then band members got married, followed by children, and so they decided to split. As they had no more time for traveling, they put their families first and stayed friends.

Here the story of Legija ends, but the music inside of Enio continued to live.

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Enio founded a new band called Sage six years ago. If you ask him what music do they play, the answer will be: “Our music doesn’t belong to any particular genre. We take what we like the most in songs of bands we listen to and combine them into one. So it is a kind of mix of heavy/power/progressive music.”

Davor Bušljeta is the lead singer, Marko Karačić takes care of bass guitar, guitars and backing vocals are handled by Enio Vučeta and Nino Kuže, the king of drums is Goran Mikulek, and keyboards are in the hands of Andrej Božić.

(Sage in Tvornica Kulture in Zagreb)

In its short existence, Sage began a fruitful collaboration with Casey Grillo – former drummer from the American metal band Kamelot, who is producing Sage’s debut album. Songs were mixed in Morrisound studios (Florida) by Jim Morris and supervised by producer Casey Grillo. LP ‘Anno Domini 1573’ was recorded in JM Sound studio (Croatia) by famous producers Franjo Valentic and Fedor Boic.

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But it is the concept of their first album story that is unique. Now, they decided to recount a story about Seljačka buna (the Peasant’s Revolt) of 1573. As you may not know, after complaining in vain to the emperor and local ban about the atrocities committed by foreign nobles, the villagers stopped paying unreasonable taxes in protest. Thus, one of the worst nobles, Francis Tahy, sent his armed mercenaries, but the villagers readily welcomed them. Because of this resistance, the Croatian Parliament declared the peasants’ traitors to their homeland, to which they responded with a universal uprising against the feudal lords.

Sage used this historical event as an inspiration for their album. For each song they produced, they also made a video with a short story. So, when you listen (and watch) the whole album, song by song, you get the complete story of Seljačka buna.

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Enio explained the reasoning behind the band’s direction for their debut album:

“I think there are enough bands in the world that sing “I love you, and you left …” etc., and that these are the topics that have described so many times that they became banal. We wanted to do something timeless. The issue of the Peasant Revolt was current 100 years ago; it is ongoing now, it will be present in 500 years; as long as there are rich and poor in the world, as long as the rich oppress the poor. The Peasant Revolt was not only in Croatia. It has been going on ever since the world has existed in every area where people live. Always rich, always greedy, always trying to exploit someone. The theme of good and evil is eternal. I mean, love is also eternal, but it is worn out so much that I see no reason for my band to do it, either. We wanted something that would be outside the scope of popular music, and again that was lively and current.” 

Most Croats do not recognize Sage, but foreigners do. They have released a CD for Rockshots Records, a Turin record company. They have signed a worldwide contract so that their CD can be purchased worldwide not only online but also physically, in a way that you come to the store and can buy it. There is less of that in the world.

As they work hard on their new album, make sure you follow them on Facebook and YouTube. Until then, discover a truth under the name of Seljačka buna.


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