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Music is truly a universal language. No matter where you're from, a good melody and a compelling performance can sweeten anyone's ear. Trio Mandili, a Georgian group comprising three young women, embodies this sentiment. Even if you can't understand the lyrics to their songs—or the wide array of songs from around the world they cover—it's hard to not be marveled at how their talents shine through the simplicity of their performances.
Trio Mandili not only have mastered harmonic singing; from it, they build cadence, emotion, and energy. Accompanied only by a panduri, a traditional Georgian string instrument, Trio Mandili has taken on folk songs from their native Georgia, traditional tunes in different languages, as well as composing their own melodies.
The group first rose to prominence in Georgia with their version of the song “Apareka” in 2014, and the world quickly followed suit. The original video, casually recorded by one of the young women, has earned over 7 million views on YouTube. With time, their talents led to represent their country at the Eurovision Song Contest 2017.
On top of being prolific artists who both perform and record their songs with a distinctive effortlessness, they also take on the daunting task of singing in other languages. A few years ago, they covered the Hungarian song “Tavaszi szél vizet áraszt” (Spring Wind Floods Water”) and the Polish folk tune “Lipka” (“Little linden tree”) much to the delight of the people of Hungary and Poland, who praised their performances and found a lot of pride in having a song in their language sung by the gifted singers.
The group has also looked beyond Europe, performing the Hindi song “Goron Ki Na Kalon Ki” (“Not of fair skinned or dark skinned ones”) from the Bollywood movie Disco Dancer. Recently, the trio also recorded the 1940 Mexican bolero”Bésame Mucho” (“Kiss Me a Lot”), one of the most popular songs in the Spanish-speaking world.
If their 1.3 million followers on YouTube are a testament to something, is that neither a language barrier nor a stripped-down production can stop the world from coming together through the power of music.