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'Video Finds' — Music
Here is a selection of Clive's 'Video Finds' in the category 'Music'. Click on any thumbnail to view its video; follow its text link to read Clive's introduction.
SCROLL DOWN THIS PAGE FOR MORE 'MUSIC FINDS'
Ian Dury and the Blockheads — “Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick”
From BBC "Rock goes to College", 1979. Ian Dury, crippled by childhood polio, weathered pub rock and punk to gain insider respect for himself and his punkishly-named powerhouse band. "Rhythm Stick" isn't your average 'Rhythm-and-Rap' number in thrall to the 'hip-hop' movement, though it is spoken rather than sung — Clive admired the flow of the rhymes, and as this clip demonstrates, the band really rocks.
Umebayashi's "Yumeji's Theme" — the same recording as in the previous video: Virgil Boutellis-Taft plays the violin solo with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Jac van Steen.
Tito Gobbi in the Te Deum scene from Puccini's "Tosca"
"Va... Tosca!". The great Italian baritone Tito Gobbi becomes the definitive Scarpia in this BBC screening of Puccini's classic opera in Franco Zeffirelli's 1964 Covent Garden production, alongside Maria Callas in the title role. The broadcast included the dressing-room sequence at the beginning (with French voice-over in this copy) as the genial Gobbi transforms himself into the villainous Scarpia.
Claude Debussy: “Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune” (Stokowski/LSO)
A celebrated performance conducted by Leopold Stokowski with the London Symphony Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, London on June 14th 1972. Stokowski was by then 90 years old, but (according to Clive) "the sexy languor of Debussy’s score was still in his blood".
Not quite as Clive intended, for copyright reasons. Here, Les and Mary perform "How High The Moon" on the Alistair Cooke Omnibus programme (The Ford Foundation, for CBS, NYC 1953) about Les Paul. The husband-and-wife duo's many other hits include "Lover", "Vaya Cos Dios", "Whispering", "Mr Sandman" and "The World Is Waiting For The Sunrise".
Les Paul and Mary Ford on Alistair Cooke's Omnibus (CBS, October 1953)
More from that Omnibus programme: Les explains how he developed the painstaking construction of 'multitrack' recordings, overdubbing voice and guitar by bouncing the track back and forth between two tape recorders, and with Mary Ford he demonstrates the technique over their recording of "How High The Moon".
A mini-biography of Les Paul, detailing some of his innovations. As well as multitracking, he may also have invented the de-synchronising effects known as 'phasing' and 'flanging' (or was that Ken Townsend at Abbey Road or Kenny Everett at the BBC in the 1960s?) And with his 'log' he may have invented the solid body electric guitar (or did Leo Fender's 'plank' come first?) This clip has been flagged by the copyright machine — we link to YouTube.
Jefferson Airplane “Somebody To Love” from the album Surrealistic Pillow, 1967
Breakthrough album for this hugely influential San Francisco psychedelic rock band of the 1960s. "Somebody To Love" composer, lyricist: Darby Slick; vocal: Grace Slick; background vocal, tambourine: Marty Balin; guitars: Jorma Kaukonen, Paul Kantner; bass: Jack Casady; drums: Spencer Dryden; producer: Rick Jarrard; engineer: Dave Hassinger.
Jefferson Airplane play “Somebody To Love” at the Monterey Festival, 17th June 1967
Grace Slick relates "I had gone to some of the jazz festivals at Monterey, so I knew the venue. We were glad to play it. Monterey was so well run and everything pretty much that was offered in the booths was handmade, and you could get to a bathroom within less than nine hours. The entire area in back of the stage was people wandering around. There were drinks and marijuana and blow and whatever else everyone was interested in. Everything worked."
Edward Elgar — “Nimrod” (Variation IX of the “Enigma” variations, marked 'adagio')
Daniel Barenboim with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, opening the 1997 season at New York's Carnegie Hall in this gorgeously performed dedication to the recently deceased Sir Georg Solti, CSO's previous music director for many years. "Nimrod" is the best known of Elgar's Variations on an Original Theme, Op. 36, the so-called Enigma Variations. The piece was dedicated to Elgar's friend Augustus J Jaeger (Nimrod was a legendary hunter) and was chosen as the anthem of the British Army.
The 1985 Covent Garden production of Richard Strauss’s comic opera, recorded for BBC television on 14th February of that year. Beginning at the 1:21:30 point, this duet features Barbara Bonney (soprano) as Sophie and Anne Howells (mezzo, pictured) as Octavian. The conductor is Sir Georg Solti. From Warner Classics.
Anna Netrebko and Elīna Garanča sing the 'Flowers Duet' from “Lakmé” by Delibes
The 'Flowers Duet' (Duo des fleurs sous le dôme épais) from Delibes' "Lakmé", sung here in concert by Anna Netrebko and Elīna Garanča with the SWDR Symphony Orchestra at the Baden Baden Festspielhaus in July 2007. Swiss TV's 720p copy of the ZDF production seems to be the best on the Web, despite its Portuguese subtitles and its copyright-driven refusal to be embedded in our video player. The link is to YouTube.
Maria McKee: “Show Me Heaven” (Top of the Pops, Thursday 13th September 1990)
Recorded from "TOTP2" 8th April 2003, originally broadcast on Top of the Pops, BBC1 Thursday 13th September 1990. Blocked from embedding for copyright reasons: clicking the image takes you direct to YouTube — you might encounter ads!
Featured video: Gene Krupa with Benny Goodman, “Sing, Sing, Sing”
The Benny Goodman big band playing "Sing, Sing, Sing", featuring Gene Krupa on drums, with a trumpet solo from Harry James. Clive loved the extended version from the 1938 Jazz Concert at Carnegie Hall, which also features a piano solo from Jess Stacey; here we have a comparatively restrained rendition, from the 1937 film Hollywood Hotel.
* Restored and augmented archive of the original clivejames.com, 2004 to 2018. Unless otherwise stated, all text and other material including audio and video is the copyright of Clive James This archive relocated June 2020 from peteatkin.com to clivejames.com. More information here.