A guitar instrumental

by Steve Mann

I wrote this piece some time in Berkeley , 2004. I don't remember very much about writing it, for some reason, but Janet Smith says she remembers when she thinks it happened. It was sort of in sections. I used to nap on the sofa in the afternoons at Bella Roma Music, partly because if I am supposed to be up late like at a music party or a chess tournament at the club, I need to sleep in the afternoon. Or the day after.

Janet says during one week, I was napping and then suddenly I sat up and picked up my guitar and played some idea on it. Then I put it away, and lay down again to sleep some more. Twenty minutes later I got up and did the same thing. This would go on for awhile, and again the next time I was over there the same routine would happen. I used to leave my guitar at Bella Roma a lot because sometimes it was hard to play wherever I was staying, for one reason or another. Sometimes I'd have a roommate that didn't want noise, or he maybe wanted to play his radio or something. I do not think I wrote any new music where I was living,

Anyway over the course of a few days, a piece in A minor sort of came together in installments at Bella Roma. It actually came out mixed together with another piece in the key of C, so I had to separate the two pieces. The other piece in C needed some words, so that actually became a song about a fish named Pythogamus that lives in an aquarium at the French Hotel Cafe. The one in A minor remained an instrumental. Janet said she got tired of calling it "The One in A Minor," so we decided it needed a better name.

  It has a progression from A minor down to G and F and E major, which is a common Spanish chord progression, so I called it Hasta Luego. The piece has two sections, but I don't have a set number of times to play each section, and there are sometimes variations within each part.

"Hasta Luego" must have come from somewhere that I go when I fall asleep.




This is one of several pieces we have started to record in our home studio with Steve. "Hasta Luego" was the closest instrumental to being finished, though in my opinion it is still very boistrous and clangy sounding, compared to Steve's "Holly," which is so smooth and effortless. But we needed at least one new piece for this collection, so here it is. There are other new songs and pieces yet to be captured on tape. We shall see what happens.


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