Pilence Pee (Пиленце пее) is my latest musical adventure. This song features a traditional Bulgarian choir arrangement, adapted by me to an ensemble of bass instruments.
Sometimes an idea is just an idea… the idea of making this arrangement has been haunting me for the last 8 months and for 8 whole months I worked on it. This is the second effort of my BEBE, following the test experience of “Svatba”. My dear channel viewers sent me an incredible loving feedback by then, including some very own native Bulgarian friends. I thank you all for your encouragement and I really hope that this time it will please you too.
Having in mind, once again, that the Bulgarian female choir voices *are* irreplaceable, I tried again to absorb the inspiration of those wondrous sounds and, somehow, to speak my soul through my playing.
The original BEBE concept had to be extended. To achieve the expression of the sustained pairs of voices, I used effects on some basses, namely, the Malekko b:assmaster (second appearence after “Amazing Grace“) and a Sansamp TRI O.D.. My BEBE (Bulgarian Electric Bass Ensemble) had a very special non “electric” guest – one of my doublebasses had an important contribution for the final texture of the sound. BEBE’s veteran members Rickenbacker 4001CS and Fender VI also welcomed the Zon Sonus 8-string and the Warwick Thumb Bass.
The notes were taken all by ear and, later, checked with the help of a friend of mine. Then many changes were (as in Svatba) made, as to adapt the song to my own taste and style of playing, hopefully without spoiling it too much. On the outro I did take some more freedom, harmonically, and in general drifted away from the original Krassimir Kiurktchiiski’s arrangement.
Pilence Pee (sounds like “Pilentse Peh”) is a Bulgarian folk song and it means something like “Little bird sings”. I just know a little Bulgarian and I searched for the meaning of this song, with the generous contribution of some friends. For 20 years, since I heard this song released on the album by 4AD, I sang it without understanding a word, just sounds. But, having understood the lyrics this year, I honestly had the sensation that I already had got the message. The message is beautifully composed and yet extremely tragic. And if there is a sign of hope for the years to come, the beauty of the Bulgarian Music that blossomed from its people, in spite of five centuries of slavery couldn’t be a better example. Love now – because it may be too late and you will regret it. Hear what the little bird speaks.
high (main):Rickenbacker 4001CS + b:assmaster
high (pedal):Warwick ThumBass + TRI-O.D.
mid (main & pedal):Fender VI and doublebass
low (main):Rickenbacker 4001CS + b:assmaster
low (pedal): Zon Sonus 8
19/07/2009 in Bulgarian Music
Tagged 4001, 4001CS, 4AD, 5-string, 6-string, 8-string, acoustic bass, bass, bass cover, Bass Driver, bassline, BEBE, Bulgares, Bulgaria, Bulgarian, Bulgarian State Television, Choir, Chris Squire, contrabaixo, DI, double-bass, doublebass, България, Красимир, Кюркчийски, Мигел Фалкао, Пиленце пее, Филип Кутев, eight-string, electric bass, ensemble, Falcão, Female Choir, Fender, five-string, guitar, harmony, Miguel, Miguel Falcão, miguelbass, Mystére, Mystery, Pilence, Rickenbacker, Sansamp, Sonus, Squire, Thumb, upright, VI, Vocal, vocal harmonies, Voices, Voix, Warwick, Zon
This idea was inspired by the magnificent music of the Bulgarian female choirs, better known as “Le Mystére des Voix Bulgares”, conceived by the great Filip Kutev. This Music is part of me since I long ago came across its 1st vinyl, released by 4AD. Only some years back I had the great priveledge of witnessing two great performances by The Bulgarian State Television Female Vocal Choir, directed by Prof. Dr. Dora Hristova. Needless to say, it was a dream come true. My little tribute’s idea is simple but not necessary successful – To recreate the choir format, such as the voices correspond to bass guitar timbres. Each of the 4 voices was attributed to one specific bass, and played twice to create the ensemble effect. Eventually each voice plays a slightly different line, usually intervals of a second, very specific of these arrangements. A tough task – to transcribe the piece by ear, adapt it to the playability of the basses, trying to mantain the dynamics of the piece, and produce it, so all the low frequences don’t colide too much and each “voice” can be heard. 10 tracks vere recorded and 2 to 6 vocal lines can be (hopefully) heard. No effects were used, to preserve each instruments own “voice”. And then producing the video. I invite you to discover this unique Music, checking my favourites section. This is only a mere recreation, done by heart and it’s galaxies away from the Real Thing. One of my favourite songs is “Svatba” (Wedding) – a Bolyar wedding celebration coming from far away. So, without further delays, I present you: the Rickenbacker 4001, the fret-ripped j-bass copy, and the Fender VI – I name it, with all due respect, the Bulgarian Electric Bass Ensemble, or simply, “BEBE”.
03/02/2009 in Bulgarian Music
Tagged 4AD, bass, Bass Driver, BEBE, Bulgares, Bulgaria, Bulgarian, Bulgarian State Television, Choir, Chris Squire, DI, България, Кутев, Мигел Фалкао, Сватба, Филип Кутев, electric bass, ensemble, Falcão, Female Choir, guitar, harmony, Miguel, Miguel Falcão, miguelbass, Mystére, Mystery, Sansamp, Squire, Svatba, Vocal, vocal harmonies, Voices, Voix, YES