During a break at a conference I was recently attending, the audio-video guy played an amazing snippet that blew my socks off (note to self, start wearing elasticated socks). This video was of a Finnish rock band called the "Leningrad Cowboys" and they have to be seen to be believed.
Do you remember the classic Muppet Show in which the famous Russian ballet dancer Rudik (Rudolph) Nureyev (1938-1993) performed a scene with Miss Piggy (www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARUM0-jtjIg)? Well, believe it or not, the Leningrad Cowboys actually surpass this on the "wild-and-wacky scale.
Check out this scene (www.youtube.com/watch?v=0lNFRLrP014) in which the Cowboys are singing the Lynyrd Skynyrd song "Sweet Home Alabama" backed by – I kid you not – the Red Army Chorus (yes, we are talking about the official choir of the former Soviet Union's Red Army).
I know it sounds strange, but for some reason this just "works". As soon as I had a free moment I went out on Amazon and ordered The Total Balalaika Show DVD, which is a video of the concert held in Senate Square in Helsinki in 1993. Here we see the Leningrad Cowboys joined by the Red Army Chorus and Dance Ensemble for a unique blend of music and spectacle.
Considering that the Leningrad Cowboys' focus is rock-and-roll while the role of the Red Army Chorus is to preserve Russian folk music, you might think that this is an unlikely combination ... and it is ... but (as I said already) it works! As the page on Amazon says:
What might seem an impossible combination of musical styles and tastes actually becomes a sublime cosmic experience, especially when the Red Army musicians pick up their balalaikas to join the Cowboys on Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven."
My DVD just arrived. I can't wait to race home, ensconce myself in my "comfy chair", and watch this little beauty. I tell you, I've had months that were shorter than this week. TGIF (Thank Goodness It's Friday!)
Questions? Comments? Feel free to email me – Clive "Max" Maxfield – at firstname.lastname@example.org). And, of course, if you haven't already done so, don't forget to Sign Up for our weekly Programmable Logic DesignLine Newsletter.