Saturday, 10 January 2009

One song in the style of another - 2

Staying for the moment on an elevated plane of inspirational reinterpretation before slewing off into complete madness, let me take up the baton from Gadjo Dilo, who has contributed to this meme an accordion interpretation of highway to hell, bless him.

Aside from accordions, another great instrument that has the capacity to bring any song - however pretentious - down onto a level of healthy ridicule and instant fun is the ukulele. The finest exponents of ukulele music currently practising are the divine Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain. Almost anything from their repertoire could fit this thread, but I think their finest work takes an overblown piece of tosh by borderline vampire Kate Bush and makes it a thing of incomparable beauty:


Gadjo Dilo said...

Superb!! And personally, being a 40-something now rather than a bespotted teenager, I can of course listen to this much more easily than I can the gauche original.

scarlet-blue said...

Me and a honky tonk pianist, once performed a jazz version of 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow'... in public.
I am also responsible for a punk version of 'The Sound of Music'.
I will try Wuthering Heights next... it seems to lend itself well to adaptation...

No Good Boyo said...

I hope you've seen the sublime video they made of this:

They are mint.

At college I and a group of fellow men formed the Kate Bush Appreciation Society, which amounted to our bellowing Wuthering Heights in any pub that hadn't banned us yet. Which meant the Railway Inn, Killay. A scary place.

Gadjo Dilo said...

Ah, a Welsh Wuthering Heights, it had to be done Boyo! In Welsh, I assume, and what would be the names of protagonists? I'm currently thinking Idris and Morfudd.

No Good Boyo said...

In English. We were purists. Idris would work very well, and in Arabic too. Lili would be good for Cathy, as it rhymes. The chorus:

"Idris, dyma fi
Tyrd adre
Mor oer yw hi-i-i-i-i-i-i
Wrth y ffenest, ynafe..."

Gyppo Byard said...

Gadjo - I know what you mean. Making challenging listening easier will be an ongoing theme of this series.

Scarlet - shall we arrange a musical evening some time? I am a passable honky-tonk pianist when suitably inebriated; on one memorable occasion a mezzo of my acquaintance asked me to vamp some Schubert on a clapped-out piano in a rough pub in Oxford for her. There was a crowd of Irish labourers in. They listened with rapt attention and then started shouting things like "DO 'AN DIE MUSIK'!" and "DO YOU KNOW GRETCHEN AM SPINNRADE, LOVE?" We obliged, and got many tips.

Boyo - indeed; but I think the live version is better...

Wyddering Heights in Welsh, forsooth. Whatever next?