YouTube Transcription #58 Bill Baliey

Bill Bailey is a British comedian who is popular on game shows and talk shows. His own live performances include a variety of musical instruments, and he uses music as a unique tool in comedy.

Thank you, good evening… and that music you’ve just heard is the exact sound of the Buckingham Palace doorbell. You’re from London? Some Londeners in? Lovely! Yes, I love London, London’s great. Oh, it’s brilliant, I love it. It’s such a magnificently multicultural wonderful, magnificent place. There’s a butcher’s at the end of my road called ‘Halal, is it meat you’re looking for?’ (Song: ‘Hello, is it me you’re looking for?’).
Trumpets are fantastic instruments. They’re all about celebration, tonight’s about celebration. And trumpets have long been the instrument associated with ceremony, but also in a military capacity. The sound of the trumpet was used on the battlefield to cut across the clamour of battle. The sound of retreat, in a way that, perhaps, a harp wouldn’t have been so effective… “Retreat, retreat, move backwards with your feet.”
And classical music also contains functional elements to it. I’ll give you an example. Something which is often used in piano music; it’s called the Alberti Bass. Mozart was a big fan. And I think it’s a way of enlivening unremarkable TV themes, like ‘Eastenders’, for example, which is so depressing, isn’t it? To me that sounds like, ‘Everyone is going to die.’ It just… but with the Alberti, of course… you know, it just sounds a bit classier. It could work equally well with the ‘Match Of The Day’ (TV football programme) theme, couldn’t it? That’s rather nice. Although I must admit, when it comes to ‘Match Of The Day’ I prefer the lounge version. The ‘Match Of The Day’ theme is a rather brisk and jolly march, isn’t it? But if you slow it right down, you get a Jewish folk song.
And then, you see, the mark of a great tune – very versatile. And another thing about a great tune – you can play it on any instrument, and I’d like to demonstrate that now as I play a medley of popular songs on a rather unusual instrument.
Thank you! Come on, let’s try something that’s never been tried before – the finale of the ‘1812 Overture”.

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