Chariots of Fire

Day: 167
Practice Logged: 108 hours + 30 minutes
Feeling: soundtrackish

We went out running in the bitter cold this morning and part of another year-long project I’m doing to mash up my photography with my running, I took a few hundred photos as part of a kind of stop-motion animation of part of our route.

Some software magic later I’d uploaded a one minute clip to our run club’s Facebook group, and leave it Leon, but he jokingly chided me for not including a backing audio track (probably because so many of the other videos I’ve posted have included a little royalty-free music behind them.

I pulled out my camera and violin and recorded the theme from Chariots of Fire in just one take… and uploaded the video as a response to his comment. This is the audio from that.


Day: 160
Practice Logged: 104 hours + 35 minutes
Feeling: long-weekendish

Not much to say about this recording… other than that I pulled this one out of the air in one take, so that had me feeling pretty good. There are a couple minor flubs, but I think I mostly I nailed this simplified adaptation of the Cohen classic better than I would have expected for a Sunday evening after a couple glasses of wine. Technically, this is the Rufus Wainright cover from the film “Shrek” as it was published in a big book of movie music that I have, but even though I (sheepishly admit) discovered the song from that cover, I think I’m one of the few people who prefer the original.

Can’t Help Falling in Love

Day: 151
Practice Logged: 99 hours + 55 minutes
Feeling: cold

I’m on the verge of a hundred hours. Technically… five minutes short as I write this.

I had the day off and I was trying to put together some more videos, having realized earlier in the week that I was really far behind on my efforts of turning raw video footage into something watchable.

Other than the fact that my computer needed some tune ups, I made a bit of a dent… and part of that dent saw me digging through all that almost-a-year-old footage from our trip to Hawaii last winter.

And then I was doing some rendering and I came across this classic bit of Elvis music from… Blue Hawaii


Day: 145
Practice Logged: 95 hours + 0 minutes
Feeling: patriotic

A lot of people think Edelweiss is some kind of Austrian folk song or even their national anthem. It’s not. It’s just a sober tune from “The Sound of Music” and composed by Rodgers & Hammerstein.

If you recall the song and its appearance in the story it is actually something of a patriotic ditty. Captain Georg von Trapp sings it as a kind of ode to Austria, as the then independent nation of Austria was on the verge of the Anschluss. The Nazis had been in power for a bit at this point and as a prelude to war, had begun the process of annexing the country of Austria, a process they would describe as peaceful — the “joining” is how it translates I think — but which was not without fierce nationalist opposition from a small number of people who resisted the rise of the totalitarian state to their north.

If you’ve seen the film you know how it turns out. The Captain gets coerced, heckled, intimidated and eventually harassed by people he once considered friends into accepting the inevitable rise of a dark power across their border. Sinister folks bully him towards the notion of joining into the populist rage that brought Hitler to power and gave control of most of Europe to the dictator to their north. The Captain is eventually forced to choose between joining the Nazis or going to prison… or fleeing, which is what he does and the family is forced to escape over the mountains and as the curtain falls World War II erupts off scene.

The song is also the theme to the TV dramaThe Man in the High Castle” which I’ve been watching on my Amazon Prime account. It’s dark and haunting but pretty damn good actually.

Princess Leia’s Theme

Day: 107
Practice Logged: 70 hours
Feeling: sad

December 28

This is far from perfect, but I spent a good hour learning to play it today. A few minor mistakes, but the song has a wookie-load of accidentals… and I’d like to see Han Solo play as good with only three and half months of practice.

RIP Carrie Fisher :(