Fabulous Friday - - "Lady of Spain"

April 27, 2018

I have a thing for the New York Times obits.  I used to read them every day, but I guess I've found more useful ways to use my time.  My favorite thing is reading the obit of someone I've never heard of, and then I get turned onto that (dead) person.  That happened a few years ago with Dick Contino, an "accordion heartthrob" of the 1950s (that's the NY Times term).


His recording of "Lady of Spain" is nothing short of hair-raising!  It's only 2:39, so I urge you to listen to the whole thing, but please allow me to point out a few highlights. 


0:15 - - The whole intro is hilarious, but the finale to the intro is totally nutso.

0:52 - - He does some dazzling work in the bridge.  I'm sure those fingers were flying.

1:14 - - There's a flourish here that KILLS ME.

1:38 - - I like that they give him a chance to catch his breath at the key change.  Maybe just three seconds.

1:45 - - Something about the rhythms here gives me vertigo.

1:53 - - Another key change, back to the original key!  I never heard of such a thing.

2:07 - - The grand finale, which goes on and on, a la Tchaikovsky!


That grand finale really knocks me out.  At 30 seconds, it's nearly 20% of the length of the whole damn recording!




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December 14, 2019

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