Tag Archive: music


Puddles Pity Party says, “My deepest thanks to all essential workers stationed on the front lines of this pandemic, be they doctors, dentists, nurses, medical technicians and administrators, grocery clerks, farmers, delivery people, mask makers, sanitation workers, utility crews, and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Stay safe out there.”

Octobass

Composers and orchestras like to use their lowest instruments sparingly, for maximum impact. Few instruments go lower and are used more sparingly than the huge and strange octobass, one of the rarest classic instruments in existence.

Invented in 1850 by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, the octobass was intended to bring an extremely deep rumble to the orchestra sound. The three-stringed instrument stands between 11 and 12 feet tall, about twice the height of a double bass. This giant bass produces sound so low, some of the notes fall outside the range of human hearing—these vibrations can only be felt.

The rare instrument is almost too large to play. The strings are too big to press with your fingers, so fretting them requires operating pedals and levers that control capo-like mechanisms to press down the strings. In fact, the octobass originally required two people to play: one on the bow (which, though shorter that the bow of a double bass, is extra heavy) and one working the lever system.

Vuillaume originally built three octobasses, two of which are still around. Including contemporary, playable replicas, there are only seven known examples of the instrument in the world, mostly kept in museums, including one at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona. The octobass in Phoenix is tuned C0, G0, D1, a range that’s two octaves below the cello and one octave below the modern double bass. Its low C note is lower than the lowest note on an 88-key piano, and beyond what most people can hear.

The Montreal Symphony Orchestra is the only orchestra that owns one of these unusual instruments, and composers still write music for it on occasion. When played today, it is usually by a single person.

Such a voice. Her Spanish-language albums are divine, BTW.

Musical comedian Bill Bailey performing his version of the Downton Abbey theme tune during “Easter Night At The Coliseum 2015.”

RaisingHeller of the Heller family says, “Solitary confinement does strange things to the best of us and this quarantine was really having an effect. My wife texted me and said, “we need to remake a music video.” I thought that sounded like a lot of work, but her persistence paid off and here we are. Enjoy!”


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/404483016″>Journey-Separate Ways (Heller Quarantine Edition) Side by Side</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/raisingheller”>RaisingHeller</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Mark Johnson, PFC producer and co-founder of Playing For Change says, “This song reached the masses from the Buena Vista Social Club project and I have heard so many variations and versions performed around the world ever since. We decided to create our own version while on a trip recording and filming music in Cuba in 2015. The Legendary Pancho Amat on the Cuban tres along with the incredible piano playing of Roberto Carcasses set the framework for this song, and then once we heard Teté Garcia Caturla sing lead vocals we realized exactly why we do what we do. Listen to how well Cuba, the USA, and the Middle East all get along when the music plays.”

Puddles says, “Hey. Have an okay day today. OK? I wrote this song, today. A friend asked me to post it here so they could share it with their mom. I miss my MeeMaw.”

The Marsh family from Faversham (in Kent, England) went viral with their lockdown adaptation of the Les Misérables song “One Day More.”

Family Lockdown Boogie

People are so darn creative.

Being a dad to a sullen teenage daughter isn’t easy. Learn to channel those feelings of worthlessness and despair into your guitar!

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