Category Archives: Music

Flash Mob – Ravel’s Bolero

Installed a new browser – Vivaldi – which allowed me to finally watch the first episode of the new Doctor Who! So how better to celebrate than with one of my favourite classical pieces?

I could have found a slick orchestral video, but I thought you might enjoy this flash mob version instead. Enjoy!

cheers

Meeks


Cigány primás – Zoltán Mága

My Dad has been gone for eight years now, but he returned today, in the music of Zoltán Mága. I recognized the gypsy ‘style’ as soon as the Offspring said, “Mum, you have to hear this!’

This first video clip is a csárdás – the music for a Hungarian folk dance – and Zoltán Mága is what my Dad used to call a ‘Cigány primás’, literally the prime or first violin of a gypsy band.

Dad wasn’t a gypsy primás, but he did learn the violin from one, and that influence stayed with him his entire life. I grew up learning to play from sheet music [on the piano] so I could teach Dad to play songs by ear. One of his favourites was Lara’s Theme from Doctor Zhivago.

My tastes in music ran more to classical music like the Hungarian Rapsody by Franz Liszt or Ferenc Liszt as we Magyar would write it:

But Dad would have absolutely adored this exuberant gypsy music:

Pacsirta is a kind of bird, hence the bit in the middle. 🙂

Dad was a champion gymnast, a mechanical engineer, and in the last third of his life, a busker on the streets of Melbourne. He became quite famous as the man in the tuxedo who played his violin on the trains. He was 87 when he finally stopped playing, 89 when he died.

I miss you Dad.

28/03/1996 NEWS: Violinist ‘Lolly’ with activities support officer Ray Thompson. Busker. Busking. Buskers.


Retirement…slow down or speed up?

Not sure what your answer is, but mine is speed up! There are still so many stories I want to tell that another 50 years wouldn’t be enough, especially when I’m such a slow writer. And then there’s all that new tech coming online…

I’m not really a techie, you know. The true techies love all technology, whereas I’m pretty ambivalent about some of the innovations out there. Nevertheless, there are some gadgets I can hardly wait to use…like 3D printers for the home. Want that new top in your size? Not a problem, pay for the design and wait a few minutes while your 3D printer manufactures it for you. Or robots…I’ve loved the idea of robots since I first read ‘Door into Summer’ by Heinlein.

-laughs- I bet you thought Asimov was the only one who wrote about robots? Not so. You can find a description of ‘Door into Summer’ here.

Anyway, I’m saving my pennies for a household robot that will clean up after the cats, put the rubbish out, or maybe compost it on site? and mow the lawn. I’ve got a lot of lawn :/

But that’s not all! I haven’t had a chance to try VR yet, and it’s right up there as a ‘must do’ on my bucket list. I want to be able to travel the world from the comfort of my own home, and I want to fight monsters in glorious technicolour.

Of course, all of that depends upon how my eye-sight works with VR [I see depth via motion parallax, not stereopsis], but I’m hopeful, and this glorious track by Two Steps From Hell is how I feel at the ripe old age of 65. 🙂

The track is called ‘Unleashed’… Bring it on!

cheers

Meeks


Hilarious!

No intros…just watch & listen!

…and yes, it’s exactly what you think it is. 😀

My thanks to Russell Ray for introducing me to this fabulous video clip!

Happy Tuesday,

Meeks


Back to music!

It’s been ages since I posted anything about music because, well, I haven’t been listening to any. I’ve been completely engrossed in my technical writing for months now, and technical writing does not play well with music. Or at least it doesn’t for me because my focus has to be on clarity and precision, not creativity.

I’ve enjoyed my break from creative writing, but I’ve really missed the music, so my thanks to the Offspring for telling me about the soundtrack to the movie ‘Mongol’.

It’s like nothing I’ve ever listened to before, and the ‘throat singing’ is not exactly pretty to Western ears. And yet…and yet….I love it. It’s kind of raw and sets the nerves a-jangle, but it beats a cup of coffee when it comes to waking my brain up. See what you think:

 

Oh and I’m turning comments off so no one has to be polite. :p

-hugs-

Meeks


Barbra Streisand – The Broadway Album

The Offspring and I were listening to The Broadway Album on the way home, and it was…wonderful. I’d forgotten how exceptional this album truly is. Here are a few tracks that bring me out in goosebumps, even after so many years.

The first track is a re-arrangement/medley from The King and I, one of my favourite old-time musicals:

Next up is a song I didn’t much like when I first heard it. But Streisand’s version makes me shiver. This particular rendition was recorded only a couple of years ago. She still has it.

And now, Pretty Women. It’s another medley and always makes me smile.

Last but not least is a song that every Indie should listen to at least once a year! Pay attention to the lyrics. You won’t be disappointed. 😀

 

Enjoy. 🙂

Meeks


Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion – The Prayer

Just because it’s beautiful. 🙂

And special thanks to A Momma’s View for starting the music tonight:

https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/24134256/posts/1415692637

Goodnight all,

Meeks


Barcarolle by Offenbach

The Offspring and I were talking last night, about some of the loveliest arias in opera, and neither of us could remember the name of this one, so I looked it up [thank god for Youtube].

This glorious version is sung by two, young sopranos with amazing voices…and tiny waistlines! The days of girth are gone. 🙂

As you listen to this video, please bear in mind that this is a rehearsal….

The mezzo with the warm, deep voice is Elina Garanca. The soprano with the soaring upper register is Anna Netrebko.

So happy to have found two new [to me] opera singers.

cheers

Meeks


Alien 3 ending and music

I have always loved classical orchestral music – think Chopin, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky etc – so the soundtrack of Alien 3 was a real departure for me, and in many ways it paved the way for the music I love now.

My favourite piece in the whole soundtrack by Elliot Goldenthal is the Adagio. It’s the score for the final scene and it’s very powerful :

Part of the reason this piece had such a profound effect on me was definitely visual – the themes of The Cross and The Mother can’t help but resonate, even with an ex-Catholic.  But I believe those themes would not have been half as powerful without the music that gives them their emotional context.

And now for the reason I was reminded of this music in the first place. I’ve had the following track on repeat for over an hour. It’s by Max Legend, and it’s called Adagio for Strings:

The two tracks are nothing alike and yet…they are both beautiful and uplifting in a way I can’t describe.

Happy Sunday,

Meeks


Say hello to Max Legend!

In case there was any doubt, I’m in love with a new composer, and his name is Max Legend! Raw, driving, powerful yet lyric, ML’s music is not gentle. It doesn’t yearn, it stirs…no, it doesn’t just stir, it kicks arse. And that is the exact feel I’ve been looking for all summer.

Many writers use music to set the mood for their storytelling, but for me, music is not an optional extra, it’s a necessity. And not just any music. It has to be the right kind of music for the story I want to tell. Without it, I write words, but they’re not connected to my heart. Does that make any sense?

Yes? No? Maybe? This is why I dislike writing about the writing process. Every writer is different so something that makes sense to one person may make no sense at all to another. For me, music acts like a portal that carries me straight past the logic centres of my brain to the weird, messy, parts.

But the right music doesn’t just take me to my ‘creative side’. It also helps to translate all those messy, nebulous thoughts and feelings into a linear progression of words that end up telling a story.

No two people will ever experience a story the same way, and no two people will ever respond to a piece of music the same way. But sometimes, if I get it right, they may share a feeling, for a little while. To me, that’s what real communication is all about.

So…I’ve finally found my way into the next story. I won’t publish excerpts on the blog because I’ve learned not to make anything public until its well and truly done. But I will post the odd bit of music, and for the forseeable future it will all be from the brilliant mind of Max Legend. 🙂

cheers

Meeks

p.s. ML is another composer who writes for trailers, games and movies.

 


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