Sunday, January 29, 2023

Sunday morning music


Sometimes - not very often - a piece of music comes out of one cultural tradition and musical heritage, only to be adopted as their own by multiple other traditions.  It expresses emotions, feelings and images that transcend boundaries.

Such a piece was written by Scottish musician Dougie Maclean, and performed on his 1990 instrumental album "The Search".  Be patient with its relatively slow opening.  The "meat" of the song - which I'm sure most of my readers will recognize - comes in about halfway through.

As I'm sure most remember, the song was adopted as the main musical theme of the 1992 movie "The Last of the Mohicans".  As such, under the oddly spelt title "Promentory", it became instantly popular worldwide.

The song has gone on to be played by many music groups around the world, and may be one of the most "cross-cultural" pieces of our time.  I've selected a few to illustrate how it's been absorbed into other musical cultures.

First, here's a Brittany-Irish version from Breizh Pan Celtic.  I like the harp adaptation.

Next, here's Indiogenes with a South American adaptation.  I haven't learned enough about the history of that continent to know which of its ancient cultures (Aztec, Maya, etc.) may be represented here.

How about an all-guitar version?  Here's the Italian quartet 40 Fingers.

And finally, here's the late Yemeni performer Ahmed Alshaiba performing the song on the oud, a lute-type traditional instrument popular in the Middle East.

There are other adaptations out there, as a search on YouTube will reveal.  In a little over 30 years, the simple original Scottish piece has become a worldwide and multicultural phenomenon.



Anonymous said...

The version done by Luca Stricagnoli is also very good:


Bart Noir said...

Yesterday my favorite bard. Today my favorite melody. You somehow find a way to lift my spirits again and again.

May your surgery go well and may you heal without itching.

Bart Noir