Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Another brief musical note.

Frequent visitors to this nice little Skull & Pumpkin will no doubt be noticing a slight change in the lineup of the Hallowe'en Jukebox just there to the right.

I thought a change was needed; not that I don't love all that was there previously (and which shall be here again at various times), but with the approach of some of those other holidays that some folks seem to love a little too much, I figured a mix of still-Autumn flavors might be nice for everyone.

First, of course, Vince Guaraldi's The Great Pumpkin Waltz is the official song of the Skull & Pumpkin, and therefore remains the first tune, and will always be the first tune, on the jukebox. I mean, c'mon.

Then I thought I'd add another great Guaraldi piece, literally the next Guaraldi-Peanuts tune in the holiday schedule: The Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Theme. It's a classic, and it makes Thanksgiving feel right... I mean, it's another waltz in Guaraldi's inimitable style, so it's like a touch of Hallowe'en in Thanksgiving. Plus it makes me think of Woodstock in a too-big pilgrim costume and that makes me happy. A fine addition.

OH, then we have a kind of Fall-Harvest-Thanksgiving song from long ago... the incredible Song of the Festival of the New Wine, from 1943's Frankenstein Meets The Wolfman. If you've not seen it, well, in one scene there's this festival where this gypsy kinda guy sings this song with about a trillion people backing him up and... oh, just get it and see it. I will only add they sing to Lon Chaney, Jr. (reprising his role of Larry Talbot from 1940's The Wolf Man) and he blows up at them all. That's him shouting at the end. Far-oh-la-far-oh-leeee!

Then we get into late Autumn a bit more seriously.
Rickover's Dream is a groundbreaking solo guitar bit of genius from the late 'guitarist from another planet', Michael Hedges. I first heard this version from An Evening With Windham Hill Live (1982), and a studio version was done for his Aerial Boundaries album in 1984. I feel this is the far superior performance of this piece, and brings to mind the driving, flitting and dark-happy rhythms of Fall.

Then comes George Winston's solo piano treasure Peace from his album December (also from 1982). It is rain and snow, it is sun and shadow, restful, warm, unintrusive but always pulsing under your own thoughts. This is a night falling song, a leafless tree at sundown. If you want to hear a piano actually inhale and exhale...

So much for the new additions. The final three are favorites from the first jukebox incarnation; Pumpkintime, my own Grim Grinning Groove and the beautiful The Trees Weep Leaves.

Of course, I had to remove much to add new things; my account must remain free until I become rich, so audio hosting space is limited. It's all good. I'll add and subtract as time passes, but I'll always let you know what, when and why.

In the words of one William Wonka, I think you're going to love it.

Just love it.

1 comment:

  1. I wouldn't have thought those were the real lyrics. I just "fa la la'd" the whole thing. What does it mean, anyway? Except, of course, you know, the eternal life thing. Awesome. Thanks.