Recess 12--On meeting Vangelis

If you've gotten to this area of The Classroom, you've been working hard, take a breather and enjoy a little story, plus an interesting musical concoction. I first heard of Vangelis when I saw the movie Chariots of Fire and heard the brilliant main title theme, then of course, I enjoyed him even more when I heard the dreamy and dark music that accompanied the Ridley Scott film Blade Runner.

Then there were all those other films he scored such as: Conquest of Paradise; Missing; The Bounty; and Alexander. Vangelis gave his first American concert at Royce Hall, UCLA, and naturally I had to be there. Of course by that time, I had purchased every recording of his I could find. I was a real fan and since I was working for KFAC at the time, I immediately called his management to set up an interview. I would speak with him the two days before the concert in his bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

Needless to say I was jazzed. He occupied one of those two-story places they have there. His entourage consisted of a bunch of tech guys who knew his equipment needs backward and forward and could solve any electrical problem should once arise. I was taken downstairs which was really the bedroom area, and he had all of his keyboards set up, along with one of the newest machines of that time, a Prophet VS. Sequential Circuits had just given him one for a test run.

We chatted for about 45 minutes and regrettably, I have misplaced the interview, so I can’t put it up here. We talked about his music, past and present, and he was quite excited about a ballet he was working on. He was warm, friendly and very Greek, but his English was excellent.

The concert was wonderful, and the great thing was that I noticed that Jon Anderson of "Yes" was sitting behind me. Vangelis obviously knew he was there, and he motioned for him to come up on stage and they performed a few songs together. (If you didn’t know they ever made music together, check out the album, The Friends of Mr. Cairo.) The encore was brilliant, a set of variations on the song, "Singing in the Rain."

Here is a little something I knit together electronically—the Bryan Ferry song "Will You Love Me Tomorrow?" along with the Love Theme from Blade Runner by Vangelis. It’s another one of those cases of—"it sounds like they were born to be together." Listen!

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