Quixote

QuixoteWritten and performed by Reynold Philipsek, copyright 2017, available as a complimentary download on the Free MP3s page.

The 17th Century Spanish tale by Miguel de Cervantes of Don Quixote and his adventures has inspired many artists. Both Orson Welles and Terry Gilliam spent considerable time, money and energy shooting miles of film to no avail or a completed film on the subject.

For more than 15 years I have entertained the idea of writing an “episodic” piece about this prototypical “hidalgo.”

During my recent six weeks in Naples I finally began to write this music.

In keeping with the Spanish theme of the central character I have utilized two distinct Spanish dance rhythms- The “guajira” (a bar of 6/8 followed by a bar of 3/4) and a Tango/Habanera rhythm.

There are three resting pedal points which can be seen as transitional (scene changes). These three “pedals” are C, D and E. The piece could easily be extended further by continuing these pedals in whole tones 4 more steps (G flat, A flat, B flat) to once again return to C.

Another objective was to bend standard song forms and to create an extended piece of music that has not only prescribed themes and movements but places for improvisation. Though this version is done on solo acoustic guitar (with synth drone pedals) ideally I would like to play the piece this summer with both of my trios (East Side and Sidewalk Cafe). The drones could easily be handled on arco upright bass.

For those unfamiliar with the story, Don Quixote was a hidalgo who read so many chivalric romances that he loses his grip on reality and decides to set out to revive chivalry, undo wrongs and bring justice to the world. Cervantes tells this tale with much humor and pathos.

Funkenstein

Funkenstein
(written and performed by Reynold D. Philipsek)

Just a little dab of flotsam and jetsam I concocted in the laboratory for Halloween.
These little funk riffs have been laying around in my “attic” for many years. Now I have finally found a final resting place for them.

I first “unearthed” these riffs in my late teens only to “reanimate” them and “stitch” them together at this time for this purpose.
To quote from James Whale’s 1931 classic film of Frankenstein, “It’s Alive!” I now can say the same about these long dormant musical ideas.

Listen to Funkenstein

Wishing you all a very Happy Halloween. Stay safe, everyone and have a great night.

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