Joseph Haydn wrote his "Trumpet Concerto in E flat major" in 1796. It is a piece in three movements, dedicated it to his friend Anton Weidinger, who had developed an improved trumpet which could play chromatically throughout all its range. With natural brass instruments being the norm, this represented an important advance. Weidinger's invention was not succesful, though, and natural trumpets were used until the 1830s, when valve instruments were first...
Last Updated (Sunday, 28 June 2015 20:31)
Moscow Nights (Podmoskovnye Vechera)
There is an interesting story how Zhenya Kanaeva decided to choose ”Moscow Nights” for her Ribbon 2008. Before the season 2008 Irina Viner – head coach of Russian National Gymnast Team – went to China and visited one restaurant. At the door of the restaurant there was a bell singing the melody of Moscow Nights. And she says that every time when somebody entered the restaurant, all the visitors would start to smile and sing the song together with...
Last Updated (Sunday, 21 June 2015 15:09)
Don’t Let Me Down
“When you’re drowning,” John Lennon told Rolling Stone in 1970, “you don’t say, ‘I would be incredibly pleased if someone would have the foresight to notice me drowning and come and help me.’ You just scream.”
“Don’t Let Me Down” is Lennon’s anguished scream to his lover, Yoko Ono. When he and the Beatles recorded the song during the ‘Let It Be’ sessions in late January of 1969, Lennon asked Ringo Starr to hit the cymbal...
Basin Street Blues
New Orleans in the south of the United States is famous for many things. One is traditional jazz. Another is the regions in the city which are divided into areas known as Quarters. And in the French Quarter is a well-known area called Storyville, and its main thoroughfare is Basin Street, the basis of this song. Storyville became a red light district in the 1870s. So if you were heading down the mighty Mississippi to New Orleans and you ended up in Basin Street, there's a...
Last Updated (Saturday, 20 June 2015 16:15)
B.B. King – The Blues Man
I've traveled for miles aroundIt seems like everybody wanna put me downBecause I'm a blues manBut I'm a good man, understand
In the mid-1950s, King was performing at a dance in Twist, Arkansas, when a few fans became unruly and started a fire. King ran out, forgetting his guitar, and risked his life to go back and get it. He later found out that two men fighting over a woman named Lucille knocked over a kerosene heater that started the fire. He named the...
Last Updated (Sunday, 17 May 2015 22:26)