Monthly Archives: January 2015


20th International Folk Festival Plovdiv 2014

Here’s some more footage from last summer in Bulgaria last summer. This time we are in the Trakia region, city of Plovdiv, where the 20th International Folklore Festival took place. The afternoon was very hot and this was the last day of the festival. There were folk groups from Bulgaria and also from other countries. The second video is the evening show, in the Roman amphitheatre  in the historical centre of Plovdiv.

The stars of both shows were the home formation, the Trakia Ensemble. Established in 1974 by the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture, this is one of the most highly reputed Folk formations of the country in traditional music and choreography. Musically, its orchestra and choir have been directed by distinguished composers/conductors such as Stefan Mutafchiev, Lyuben Dosev and Dimitar Hristov, among many others.

If you do recognize the groups of artists or the songs here performed, please write me so I can add this information to the video annotations.

Thank you and I hope you enjoy the images!


Rhythm Of Love

Throughout this Holiday season, I recorded this very special bass cover of “Rhythm Of Love”.

As you may know, the album Big Generator (1987) was yet another challenge for Chris Squire, as he used a 5-string bass for all of the songs. Yet Chris made several alterations regarding the tuning. On this track (and others, including “I’m Running“) the tuning was AEADG.

The bass tone, as Chris demonstrated on his Starlicks video interview, becomes really low and powerful. The album mix doesn’t put the bass at the forefront like in many of Yes’ previous albums. I did struggle to understand the notes played, especially in the aforementioned lower register. I like to think that this is a good example of Chris designing an apparently more conventional bassline, with elements of soul music that was one of his big early influences. Yet, one can spot many of those details, variations or simply the sheer bass playing expression which makes it sound unique, like only Chris Squire knows.

For the video illustration I was generally inspired by the original video clip, which is, for me, one of the best that Yes has made. Then I took a little help from my friend Milton Trajano, by borrowing his great artwork and adapted it, with lots of improvisation, to the several moments of the song. Thank you, Milton!

As a final fortunate coincidence, we recently celebrated both Tony Kaye and Trevor Rabin’s birthdays so this is for Tony and Trevor as well!

Bass:  1992 Warwick Thumb Bass 5-string

Strings: Rotosound Swing Bass RS66LD (45-105, stainless steel) and Warwick Red Strings (135, stainless steel) Tuned to low A. I especially boiled this string to regain some brightness.

Signal conditioning: Boss LM-2 (limiter)

Preamp: Sansamp Bass Driver DI (BDDI)

Signal path: Bass→LM-2→BDDI→PC

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