Site Meter

March 31, 2008

Hungarian Fingers

...and we're back!

Vacation over, back to reality. Musical moments from the trip were few and far between... fake indians doing a rain-dance in Budapest's Heroes Square, a girl selling ceramic pipes on Charles Bridge in Prague... oh and that creepy looking guy bashing out peasant standards on a beaten old accordian.

Early on in the trip, Tim and I stumbled across The Captain Cook pub around the corner from the Opera in Budapest. We stopped in and had a pint (actually, 0.5l) of the local beer. One pint led to another, which led to a discussion about music and The Project.

The subject matter was varied, including what made me want to play guitar in the first place, who I was listening to at the time, which songs and styles were pivotal and so on. The main conclusion was that I'm not really drawn to the typical pop format. I prefer 15 minute epic songs to 3 minute radio-friendly offerings. I like to be challenged by what I'm listening to.

Tim voiced the opinion that if The Project is going to be a success I need to kick things into high gear. How? Get up and perform at an open mic before the 6 month mark. Focusing on open mics would mean I would have to stick to strumming rather than trying to advance my electric lead playing. After two beers I was unconvinced, but halfway through the third I started to see his point. Getting onstage would give me a major tick in a box.

But I can't sing!

Tim's suggestion was that he take over the task of singing, and with that in mind we made lists of:

1) Songs I'd like to record with him singing and me playing

2) Songs he'd like to record with him singing and me playing

3) Songs I'd like to try to learn for the two of us to perform at an open mic

For number 1, I selected "Wicked Little Town" by Stephen Trask, "Give Me Something Real" as performed by Queen Latifah in the movie "Living Out Loud" and finally "Melissa" by the Allman Brothers Band. We tried recording "Melissa" once before and it didn't go so well. I wanted him to mimic Gregg Allman's approach but he wanted to put his own stamp on it. Let's just say that there was some free-stying involved that I wasn't happy about and that was the end of that.

Tim pulled out a few surprises with his choices for number 2. He kicked off with "A Little Respect" by Erasure and "Please Please Tell Me Now" by Duran Duran. Toni Braxton's "Breathe Again" came in third place.

I'll admit that by the time we got to making the list of songs to perform at an open mic the beer had kicked in, so things were getting a little woolly. The selection I came up with was "Hungry Like The Wolf" by Duran Duran, "House Of The Rising Sun" (Traditional) and Cream's version of "Outside Woman Blues".

Looking at my notes from that evening I can see that we also started a 4th list, but I can't for the life of me remember what it was meant to be. I think they might be songs that I'd like to try to sing myself. It starts off with "Willin" by Little Feat and Cowboy's "Please Be With Me"... after that it's unclear what the hell I wrote!

I do remember making up the phrase "Hungarian Fingers". It sounds derogatory, but it wasn't meant to be at the time. Whilst fumbling for change I noticed that Forint coins are huge, which made me surmise that Hungarians must have super-sized digits and hence when failing to fret something properly it must be because of my Hungarian Fingers.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey, something is wrong with your site in Opera, you should check into it.