What better folly then a composition of things in a drawer.
The things in the drawer were loosely gathered to demonstrate unconscious assembly as a pattern. No thing was more important nor more powerful then any other thing. No thing was hustling another thing over a position of relative importance. There was no center of things, rather they were somewhat dispersed. No thing that tied them together but the walls and the bottom of the drawer. Much like everything else.
Manitas de Plata was illiterate, but he played like the best of writers, like the best of painters – brutally direct with no mercy for himself. Just concentrated. Pointed and hard like a rock and soft like moss on it. Almost seemingly clumsy without a plan, following the heart of traditional patterns in flamenco. Stumbling in and picking up speed all by itself. Notes playing Manitas. Also he was the reason i wanted to learn to play the guitar. When I heard him play on my parents record player — i think i was 7, i told them i wanted to learn to play the guitar. And so it went.
I just found the tune and there is a good movie and good sound!
It’s not that Manitas has this great flawless technique, actually, on the contrary. There are may other flamenco players that have much better techniques. Paco de Lucia, Tomatito, Ricardo Nunez, all are stunning technical players. Manitas often starts off playing like a smuggler. He is messy. But as you listen in, it will take you because he lets it take it. No wonder Pablo Picasso supposedly said (I disagree) he was a lesser painter then this guitarist a musician. But it’s understandable because music is performed in a forceful stream of consciousness, especially with an audience, where painting happens in a series of movements, often without audiences. The force of a stream of consciousness shared with audiences demands a very deliberate and focussed attitude tied in with a total acceptance of presence.
Anyway — here is my “Manitas” — an ode to the artist that hooked me up — and thanks for the inspiration.
Produced by Lutein van Kranen & Mark Fonds at www.sunderling.com
Peter Arends (accordeon) – Mike Kamp (bass) – Dave van Beek (percussion) – Mark Fonds (guitar)