More experiments from the organ-grinder’s workshop

Videos of arrangements of Machito’s Bananas and Valencia, and a preview of a song about doggies.

Some people said they wanted to see more of the protagonist of yesterday’s story, so this video zooms in on him at work. With respect to his head: Paul understands that the best things in life are random. I am wearing a jacket from Luton town band and IH’s wig from carnival in Oldenzaal a few years ago – I also need to figure out a costume. The brass acoustic megaphone is from Livemar in c/ Ancha/Ample in Barcelona and was their largest model. It is indispensable, but requires practice. This mambo parody was recorded by Machito and His Orchestra in the 50s, and it’s an old favourite:

My second test for today is a transcription-arrangement of a scan of a pianola roll of the song Valencia (“la tierra de las flores, de la luz y del amor”) which was sent to me an amiable archivist in that city. In case you didn’t know, a street organ, like pianolas, uses books as its music source. Here for example is the opening of the accompaniment for the vocals in Bananas:

Transcription is interesting because of what it reveals about contemporary performance practice, and about arrangers’ horror vacui (Latin for fear of vacuum cleaners). But it also raises many difficulties, and I’m not sure it’s a sensible way forward. Anyway, here it is, until the dangling ties become too much.

Finally a sketch for a number about a chihuahua that will probably be called Mi Churri, gran perrito and will be dedicated to all the doggies in Spain. I’ve also sketched a console game in an old version of Macromedia Director and am thinking about the lyrics:

Mi Churri, gran perrito (MIDI)

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