Well of course you do, you rambunctious little pumpkin!
January 25, 2019 3:30 PM   Subscribe

Composer and YouTuber Alex Ball explores the neglected genre of 40s and 50s orchestral Light Music in his continuing series, My Utterly Spiffing Guide to Light Music: Part 1: Harmony Overview, Part 2: Block chords, Part 3: Complex Harmony, Part 4: Woodwinds.

His companion series My Computer is a 1950s Orchestra presents full length pieces recreated with virtual instruments: 1 2 3 4 5.

Even if composing Light Music isn't your cup of tea, you may enjoy the musical versatility and impressive collection of vintage analog synths on display in other videos like Daft Punk Synth Tutorial, My Big Fat Guide to using a Virtual Orchestra, 70s Chord Voicing Tutorial, 80s Chord Voicing Tutorial (part 2), or 70s Cop Show Music.
posted by mubba (13 comments total) 55 users marked this as a favorite
 
Oh, I love this style of music! I feel like there are a lot of movie scores after the 50’s that use this same style, albeit less upbeat and slower tempo, but the same timbre and probably the same harmonic concepts. That wistful string sound is amazing.
posted by gucci mane at 4:00 PM on January 25


I too adore this style of music, always have. When people talk about imaginary soundtracks for their lives, this is what I want for mine.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 8:03 PM on January 25


Well, this or the music from Cowboy Bebop. Depends on how badass I'm feeling at the time.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 8:04 PM on January 25


This is fantastic!
posted by jonathanhughes at 8:04 PM on January 25 [1 favorite]


Lovely stuff, how can I get Pandora to play me a continuous stream of this?
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:10 AM on January 26 [1 favorite]


Ooh, quite easily as it turns out. Looks like I'll ve tripping gaily through my day today.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:12 AM on January 26


I love this!
posted by Obscure Reference at 8:51 AM on January 26


This is so charming! I love his delightful little commentary notes on My Computer is a 1950s Orchestra, too.
posted by merriment at 9:11 AM on January 26 [1 favorite]


I would be interested to hear more about the life and career of Angela Morley, born Wally Stott. To become a famous composer in the 1950s, undergo sex reassignment surgery in 1972 (I know that's not the preferred term nowadays) and then remain a famous composer afterward must have taken a lot. Clearly a pretty remarkable person, there must be quite a story there.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 3:45 PM on January 26 [3 favorites]


Here she is in '83 getting ready to fly a plane. She died back in '09, but her personal website looks about ten years older than that. It does not appear to contain any reference to her Wally Stott days, despite her having made Wally Stott a household name before she became Angela.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:06 PM on January 26 [1 favorite]


Clearly a pretty remarkable person, there must be quite a story there.

Wow, no kidding. I just listened to this BBC Radio documentary about her (linked from a 2016 comment here). It includes interview segments with her and others she was close to, including John Williams, who has high praise. Well worth a half hour!
posted by mubba at 5:07 PM on January 26 [2 favorites]


Cool, mubba! I'll give it a listen on my way up to the mountains tomorrow!
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:14 PM on January 26


I listened; it was good. Super cool person! I teared up a little when I heard how supportive and generally just chill about her transition her coworkers and wife were. (They remained married until Angela's death!) That kind of thing is not exactly a given even in 2019, let alone 1972.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 8:03 AM on January 28


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