QE1 once sent an organ avec grinder but sans monkey to Sultan Mehmet, but I don’t think anything good came of it–at any rate, there’s not much Orlando Gibbons being played in Istanbul these days.
Biciclown, the excellent Álvaro Neil, is in Istanbul at the moment. Here’s one of his promotional videos:
And here’s de heer Jerónimo at BikeTech in Gracia, Barcelona putting together his latest bike:
This raises a number of existential questions:
- Do you want to make children happy and the world a better place?
Alarm and disgust are my contribution to society.
- Will your organ fit in a tent?
The jury’s well out on that one. Maybe, maybe not, so room for manoeuvre required.
- Can you live on €3 a day?
Dammit man, that’s only two beers.
- What are the implications for your revenue model?
No free gigs, except in places like markets and bars where food and drink and plump ladies are available in abundance. In fact, I’d rather like to be barrel organist to the Sultan of Somewhere, playing Orlando Gibbons of course.
- Anything else?
Er, no, that’s all for the moment.
[Did you know that Nero distressed the bombers by playing the hydraulis, a water-regulated organ, rather than the fiddle as Rome burned? Roman firemen were string enthusiasts–Mantovani, that kind of stuff. What the whole world wants to know: did Byrne make it back OK?]
- The true story, never revealed, of the barrow organ
There’s more to this eggcorn than Somerset genius.
- Magnificent French orgue de barbarie entertainer
He’s got a false arm, he’s a spoons virtuoso, he’s got a good hat, his monkey plays the violin. In short, a genius:
- He’s got a pole support and the organ strapped round his neck, like all the guys in Mexico DF. That’s fine, although I imagine it must cause back trouble, but I
- One less river to cross
The secrets of Erith Driving Test Centre.
- When monkeys replaced children
There is going on a certain change for the better among this low class of strangers. On visiting them, I have remarked a considerable reduction of organs and monkeys in their apartments, usually filled with such instruments and beasts. The
- Paintings by Yefim Ladizhinsky of street organs accompanying shows
A guy winding a handle isn’t much to look at, so it was cool to find this site dedicated to Yefim Ladizhinsky (1911-82), whose work I really like, and who shows Odessa organ-grinders working with other performers. Re Spectacle (organist bottom left) he writes:
A street-organ is a musical chest the size of a small suitcase. In