Hong Kong Harry

“Hong Kong Harry”
(Composed by Reynold D. Philipsek, 1994 copyright)

I originally wrote this piece for “Global Home Movie,” which was inspired by my 1994 trip around the world. On that trip, I visited Japan and China first, then Hong Kong.

I wrote tunes for nearly every leg of the trip (China, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Athens, Rome, Switzerland, Paris, Amsterdam, Bonn, and London.)

For some reason, Hong Kong put me in mind of a film noir scene or Raymond Chandler story replete with hard-boiled detective voice-over narrative.

I started to parody the type of repartee these film noir sleuths spoke and tried to back it with appropriately orchestrated and typical American film music of the period and genre.

It was great fun.

I lean hard in the humorist style of my favorite writer S. J. Perelman in the spoken lyrics. 

Link: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5-YynqFtrUw

Dark Eyes

“Dark Eyes”
Traditional Russian Folk Song
Performed by Reynold D. Philipsek
2015 copyright

“Dark Eyes” is literally the first song I ever learned. I was probably about ten years old.

The song was in the Nick Monoloff book my guitar teacher used (he did not use the Mel Bay method).

My grandfather, who also played guitar, also knew this tune as many Eastern Europeans did.

It is, after all, considered the gypsy anthem.

I learned this song in E minor and that is the key I still play it in.

It is commonly done in D minor, however.

I have been slowly developing my solo rendition of this song for over fifty years.

It has never left my repertoire.

Its Russian title is, “Ochi Chernye” (Black Eyes), and the French title is, “Les Yeux Noirs”.

Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GgU_k0swlAw