Looking at the music of Dutch rock band Focus, started in the late sixties by Thijs Van Leer (b /31/03/48) with Jan Akkerman (b 24/12/46). Van Leer still performs and records under the name today (official site here). Akkerman's site here.




Track by track 113

Archive number: 113
Title: Black Beauty (instrumental)
Main Album: Focus 9 (New Skin)
Track number: 1
Genre: Progressive Rock Instrumental
Studio: Fieldwork Studios, Schoten, Belgium
Length: 04:10
Composer: Van Leer
Musicians: Thijs Van Leer – Hammond organ, piano, whistling; Niels Van Der Steenhoven – Guitars; Bobby Jacobs - Bass; Pierre Van Der Linden - Drums
Producer: Bobby Jacobs and Thijs Van Leer
Engineer: Han Nuijten
Label: Red Bullet
Date of recording/release: Summer 2006
Alternative version: The original vocal version appears on the first Focus album
Notes: We begin with a mincing organ, accompanied by bass and drums to introduce the piece (00:00-00:16). The electric guitar joins in with a twice stated riff in slightly muted pizzicato style (00:17-00:32). The organ then swells and the band build up (00:33-00:48) to a first guitar led “vocal” section (00:49-01:04) followed by a more tempestuous yearning section (01:05-01:16). This pattern is repeated (01:17-01:32; 01:33-01:59) the yearning section more whistful, less tempestuous at first. The “vocal” section is repeated a third time (02:00-02:31). A piano trill is heard quite distinctly at 02:15 before the yearning section comes in and the “vocal” part is repeated yet again (02:32-02:55). There is then a break down where first Van leer leads with whistling (02:56-03:10) then Van der Steenhoven very pleasantly on guitar (03:11-03:42). We play out with a whistle led “vocal” section with a final ritartando (03:43-04:10).

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