The charango is a small, rounded back guitar like instrument popular in the music of Peruvian Andes region. Kate Hathaway explains it all in the video below. Ms Hathaway forms half of a brother sister duo (the other half being James). You can learn more about this enterprising duo at their website and blog. They also have a number of videos on Youtube.
Update: This is a great song they wrote and play, called “Wait for Me,” being performed recently in a club in Peru:
In the comments section for this post, there’s a video of the Dromedary Quartet, featuring the charango, with guitar, bass and drums.
Probably nothing in the world, whether in music or literature or even science, is truly original anymore. With so much music and written language concoctions floating about everything creative probably contains something of one or more of the others. Sometimes it’s coincidence; sometimes deliberate. The plagiarism aspect of a complaint can only be maintained if the “copying” is sustained (as I humbly see it). From a cursory listening it sounds like Cold Play made the entire theme of their song, Viva La Vida, from a 70 second thematic section of Satriani’s If I Could Fly. The theme in question is clearly the main theme of Satriani’s song, though it’s development is supplemented by variated riffs. The main difference between the two themes is that while Satriani’s is melodically guitar based Cold Play’s is orchestrated. Anyway, there’s a much better analysis below. Hey, we report, you decide (sound familiar?)…
The comparison of a key part.
Joe Satriani playing If I Could Fly. The controversy stems from approximately the 50 second mark to the 120 (this interwoven theme phrasing comes in later too during the variated riffs).
Here’s Cold Play’s Viva La Vida
Here’s Part 1 of a technical analysis by Creative Guitar Studio
Can a guitar be played so loud it makes fish jump? Er, yes, yes it can. The proof, of course, is in the police report–but did anyone actually see the fish jump?
“A man made so much noise in his Colonial Drive apartment that he made his downstairs neighbor’s fish leap, the neighbor told sheriff’s deputies. It was a Monday night and the noisy man had been “playing his electric guitar and making loud drumming noises loud enough to cause the complainant’s fish to jump…” Read rest of story here.
Ironically, here’s a guitar that is a fish:
Supposedly this is “awesome guitar playing.” To each his own I guess.
Vancouver’s Fear Zero guitarist playing Octane
We’ve always heard that the Stradivarius had the finest sound of any wood instrument. Perhaps it does, but why? Is it the age of the wood? The wood itself? The construction procedure? Well it turns out, at least to scientists who have studied this phenomenon for years, the superior tone is actually due to a chemical preservative that had been used to deter the worms 300 years ago. There you have it.
Note: I’d love to do a blind test someday: Several makes from expensive, including a Stradivarius or two, to the cheapest, played all the same–the same phrasing, the same volume, etc. Would the Stradivarius win resoundingly? I have my doubts. I’ve been through this with classical guitars. Some much cheaper models sounded as good or even better, to my ear anyway, than the more expensive.