I first heard this on a cassette I bought when I visited Dublin on a day trip with the celtic society at university. That cassette was the finest collection of classical music known to humanity. Which went some ways to making up for the embarrassing faux pas I made buying it.
This is how it went down:
I stumbled upon a classical music section in the Virgin Megastore in Dublin. This concept of a classical music section in a pop music shop was something hitherto unknown. I was scared, infuriated and intrigued all at once.
Now, you could capture everything I knew about classical music back then in Jiminy Cricket’s jeans pocket(not the big ones either, but that tiny one no-one knows what’s for). Whereas now you could almost fill a Pinocchio’s nose with what I know about classical music. So still not a huge amount yet a 10000% improvement on what I knew back then.
I must say I’m rather chuffed with this Pinocchio-based volumetric system I’ve come up with. If any of you want to use it, please go ahead, feel free – all that I expect in return is a mere Geppetto full of ale.
Well I’ve hobbled my own story again by going off on some ill-advised Pinocchio tangent. Typical. I hate my blog.
Still, what’s done is done. Stay with me people. If we work together as a team we can face anything that comes through these fingers, and bring this story home on schedule.
How do you sigh in typing?
So I’m loitering outside the classical music section in the Virgin Megastore in Dublin and it goes down like this:
20-year-old me’s inner monologue: Hmmm, I’d really like that music out of Platoon but I don’t want to look like a jackass in front of the knowledgeable classical music staff by asking for that music out of Platoon. I vaguely seem to remember my old friend Neil telling me that music was called Adagio for Strings(pronounced a-DAY-jio – I later realised Neil had a tendency to pronounce anything dubious the wrong way). So I’ll ask for that like I know what I’m talking about and see what happens. God I look handsome today.
So I walk into the classical music section,looking around at all the mystery items and nodding like I’m doing some kind of smug inventory on all my old favourites.
I sidle up to the desk where a cute but diminutive girl is serving behind the counter and the following conversation ensues:
Me: good morrow fair Emerald maiden, I am from the ruling kingdom across the ocean and I demand to have a cassette tape with a-DAY-jio for strings on it. Hurry or I’ll have you flogged
OK OK OK that’s not how it went down at all. I’m not evil.
It was more like this:
Me: Uh hello. I was looking for a tape with a-DAY-jio for strings on it. Do you know if you’ve got that here?
Sexy Irish midget girl: A daisy on a street?
(Sexy Irish girl’s inner monologue: God he’s the handsomest customer I’ve seen for months – I would ask him out but a dog like me wouldn’t stand a chance with someone as handsome as him, and he sounds really cool how he speaks, and he dresses like a rock start too. He’s the kind of guy girls want to be with and men want to be.)
Me, laughing and blushing at the same time: No, ha ha, a-DAY-gio for strings.
… … … and it went back and forth a couple more times in the same fashion. I now realise that she had a rather strong Northern Irish accent which I didn’t clock at the time cos I didn’t know the difference between the two. But that added to the confusion and the humour.
Finally, she pieced it together …
Sexy Northern Irish midget: Oh I think you mean a-dah-jio for strings?
Me: Urm yes I think that’s the one.
Sexy Northern Irish midget: Oh so is it the music from Platoon you’re after then? Cos we get a lot of lads come in asking for that.
The horror, the horror.
Anyway it was a damn fine tape and I enjoyed listening to it on the ferry back to blighty as I tried to keep 14 pints of Guinness from finding their way into the Irish channel.
I think this might be my favourite from the entire cassette. It was used again in Godfather 3, to rather good effect I thought. That film is a guilty pleasure for me. Don’t tell anyone.
Here is the Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana, by Pietro Mascagni: