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In the mid-19th century, Welsh non-conformist pacifists, fleeing Anglicanism and language repression, established colonies in Patagonia, living harmoniously with the local indigenous people until the Argentine government used their presence to claim the region as Argentine, rather than Chilean. Wind on 100-odd years to the 1980s and Gruff Rhys, now lyricist and lead singer of the Super Furry Animals, sees an Argentine gaucho guitarist, singing in Welsh on TV, after arriving on stage on horseback, and is astonished to discover that the great René Griffiths is his uncle. How could this be?

Rhys’s part road-movie, part social history, part adventure spoof, part music-diary, and part family-quest is as various, unpredictable, and perfectly logical as his music, and shows that what we seek might not be as far off as we imagine.

New Internationalist issue 435 magazine cover This article is from the September 2010 issue of New Internationalist.
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