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The Apocryphal Symphonies, As Performed by Bongo Christ & Johnny Moustache

bongo christ & neville southallBongo Christ (l) and (Not) Johnny Moustache (r)


The symphonies themselves are not all that apocryphal, but their performances by Bongo Christ and Johnny Moustache, like any or most of my stories, certainly are as apocryphal as they come. Whether or not their performances will resonate with the world any better than my stories, remains to be seen.

I must point out that while a photo of The Republic of the Congo football star Bongo Christ was available at press time, a photo of Seychelles footballer Johnny Moustache was not. I brought in a photo the Welsh goalkeeping great, Neville Southall from the substitutes bench.

I could go on and on about their exploits but I won’t

So now it’s time for Andre Marriner to step up to the podium….no…sorry….make that Neville Marriner. Neville, not Andre. Neville.

So after a few tune-up honks from the oboe section and a 2nd viola, there’s hush. But not from me….after all, like Sebastian Vettel, I’ve got a French Horn my back pocket and I intend to use it.

The baton is raised. Bongo Christ and Johnny Moustache have their instruments at the ready. And then it’s time for a-one, a-two….



symphony mahlerMahler’s Symphony No. 3



symphony3Lewis Hamilton vs. Nico Rosberg vs. The World, Inc. LLC.


Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 is the longest symphony in the world. Performances clock in at a minimum of 90 minutes and usually area up in the 105-110 minute range or more. And if you want a very special experience, you might want to consider playing Jasha Horenstein’s and the London Symphony Orchestra’s great recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 at 31¼ rpm instead of the usual 33 1/3 rpm. Try it.

Anyway, the longest symphony in the world is an avid backdrop to Motorsports’ most dignified and refined version of the sport. F1. And leading that highly technical orchestra are Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton. Literally, figuratively, metaphorically. You will recall1 that at the Spanish Gran Prix that our dynamic Mercedes duo crashed each other out at on the 1st focking lap when Rosberg and Hamilton both had this hallucinogenic grace note buzzing in their ears telling them to go all NASCAR on each other.2 That little bit of argy-bargy left the door open for Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing to become the youngest driver to every win an F1 race. He held off the wily veteran Kimi Räikkönen3 to take the checkers.

At the Grand Prix of Monaco today, Daniel Ricciardo had the pole, and our dynamic duo, Rosberg and Hamilton teed off 2nd & 3rd. There was no chance today for Hamilton get a bad start since the race started under caution behind the safety car due to rain. Once they got rolling, Ricciardo hopped out to nice lead with Rosberg and Hamilton in his wake. When Rosberg had brake problems, he lost speed and team orders were followed for a change as F1 points leader Rosberg gave way to Hamilton and fell to a 7th placed finish. Hamilton chased down Ricciardo but it was an egregious error on pit road for Ricciardo that handed Hamilton the lead. Ricciardo then chased Hamilton down and almost got a pass in coming out of the tunnel, but Hamilton held him off4 and cruised on for his first win of the 2016 season.

Meanwhile the Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 is going on and on so sit back and listen, for awhile, and awhile, and awhile.



symphony schoenbergSchoenberg’s Chamber Symphony No. 2


symphony1Q. Who had a fiver on Leicester City to win the Premier League?  A. None of the above.


If Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 (which is still playing in the background btw…..) is the longest symphony in the world, then quite likely5 Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony No. 2 took the longest to write. Schoenberg started it in 1904…then abandoned it for other compositions, paintings, and so on. He finally completed it in 1939. It was first performed by Fritz Stiedry and The New Friends of Music Orchestra in New York City on December 14, 1940. Phew!! All that time!!

But if you think of the time Leicester City Football Club has been waiting to win it’s first ever championship and you’ll come to appreciate a true sense of time, and you’ll realize very quickly that music is just a bunch of notes that vanish as soon as they’re played.

Against all odds, 5000-1 odds, Leicester City won the very first 1st Division championship in it’s 132 year history. Yes, whiny-butt Cubs fans, Leicester City has been waiting 132 years to win it all.

But this season, they topped the Premier League and won going away by 10 points over 2nd place ArseAnal. Nobody saw this coming at the start of the 2015-2016 Premier League season. I certainly didn’t. I had Leicester City picked to be relegated. I also had Chelsea picked to repeat as Champions and we all know how well THAT worked out.

I would have loved to tell you all that I had a fiver, £5 or $5 or €5 no matter, on Leicester City to win the Prem even though I’d pegged them for relegation. But if I had done that, I would have bought y’all a beer already and moved on to other improbable uses for all of my mother-in-law’s money.

Leicester City had been in the Premier League before and before that in the First Division. But this season, after all those years, had that rookie season feel to it. Even a Chelsea fan such as myself got caught up in it. It was amazing what they accomplished with what was, for the most part, a murderers row of Championship (the old Second Division) level and squad players. No big name players. Unless you were a die-hard fan6 or a die-hard Championship fan, who for the most part really knew much about or even heard of the likes of Leonard Ulloa, Danny Drinkwater, Wes Morgan, Jamie Vardy, Riyad Mahrez, N’Golo Kante, Kasper Schmeichel, or Robert Huth?7 Really?? THIS lot?

EPL Coach of the Year, Claudio Ranieri worked a miracle with the Foxes as they took down all the luminaries and humbled the likes of Man City, ArseAnal, Tootenham, and ManU(re). They finished off the league on the trot with, as I said, a 10 point spread over ArseAnal (who, despite Tootenham playing 2nd viola for most of the season, managed to limp home ahead of them). Since the days of The Invicibles, it’s always forever the bridesmaid and never the bride for ol’ Arsene.

Oh….speaking of rookies….this time for real!!  Rookie IRL driver Alexander Rossi came out of nowhere and won the Indy 500 on a gas mileage strategy that worked to perfection!! Rossi, the F1 test driver for Manor (which, is pretty much nowhere when it comes to F1) ran out of gas just as he took the checkers. His car had to be pushed Victory Lane so he could don the wreath and chug the bottle of milk. So a fairy tale ending it is then in IRL too.



symphony brucknerBruckner’s Symphony No. 6 in A Major




symphony5Jose Mourinho desu ga?


The Dutch Uncle Who Wore A Pet Ferrit On His Head has be directed to a door marked Do One and ushered down a gangplank to a waiting ship named Doe Een with narry a last chance to give his FA Cup Trophy a parting kiss. So that’s done. The Legacy of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Aftermath8,  heads to Chapter 3.

And in case you hadn’t heard, it’s Jose Mourinho.

As a true blue Chelsea fan, I made my feelings known about Jose and his departure from Chelsea. I blamed Jose for his argy-bargy with Eva Carniero, but I blamed the players with the exception of Willian and Zouma, for all the rest that went down.

To be honest, I’m okay with this. In a funny and ha-ha sort of way. I’m sure he clean-up the mess that ManUre has become and do well. But will he win the league right away? No he won’t.9. Will ManUre become more interesting. Oh hell yes!! And especially with one arch-nemesis of his, Pep Guardiola replacing Manuel Pellegrini at their Noisy Neighbors across town, the Manchester Derby will become Must-See TV again whether you’re a Fan (I’m look at YOU Jeff Graf), a Hater (that would be ME, keeping the blue flag flying high, and NOT the Man City one) or a Neutral (drunken Portland Timbers fan).

Initially it will be entertaining, but ultimately it will be a metaphor sure to go wrong.

Speaking of which….

I must interject a little apology here, since Mahler’s 3rd Symphony is still strolling along in the background at 31¼ RPM. It almost blew Schoenberg off the little chamber stage despite the best efforts of Bongo Christ and Johnny Moustache and now it’s having a go at Anton Bruckner. Bruckner’s 6th was the ugly duckling of his opus. While a very much accomplished symphony, it was performed only once in his lifetime by Wilhelm Jann and the Vienna Philharmonic, but only the 2 middle movements were played. So Bruckner never heard his 6th Symphony performed in it’s entirety. The first complete performance of Bruckner’s Symphony No. 6 in A Major was posthumous in 1899. And guess who the conductor of that first complete performance was?10 None other than Gustav Mahler!!

There’s a lesson here for Jose Mourinho fans worldwide. Discuss amongst yourselves.



symphony griegGrieg’s Symphony in C Minor



symphony9Junior Jr.’s Big Bright Beautiful Day


I have to hand it Edvard Grieg. He had the guts to do what most of y’all would wish I would do with my bloog posts and that is write MUST NEVER BE PERFORMED, or in the bloog case MUST NEVER BE READ, all over the score as he did with Symphony in C Minor.

It worked for Grieg.

Musicians and Conductors and Consulting Musicologists actually complied with his request for 113 years!! 113 years!!

The scholars studied the symphony, but musicians never performed it. Not one frigging note. Until one day in 1981, the spell, the thrall placed on the Symphony by Grieg was broken and Karsten Andersen and The Bergen Symphony Orchestra performed it in a televised concert.

You know, if it were me, it’s very likely I would have blasted through that stop sign and played it years before that, had I been around before 1953, say, or after learning to play orchestral music in the 7th grade, and was able to cajole a few musicians to rosin up their violas, grab their french horns out of their back pockets and slam a new reed into the bassoon and then a one, a two, a three….for after all, music is just a bunch of notes that disappear once they’re played.

After all, the guy who gave us In The Hall Of The Mountain King also gave us a Symphony….so why not, and so?

Anyway, as both Symphony in C Minor, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 BOTH wind down to halt, I wanted to end on a happy pleasant note.

Junior Jr., a/k/a Martin Truex Jr. won last night’s Coca Cola 600 in dominating fashion. If it weren’t green flag pit stops, he would have lead every single lap. He went wire to wire and there was no one going to catch him. Junior Jimmie Johnson came close once when Truex got caught in lapped traffic. And Harvick tried every trick in the book. But it was all to no avail. Truex won going away, on the trot as the English press would say.11

And with that, I too will tuck that french horn, as it were, into my back pocket and follow Bongo Christ and Johnny Moustache off the stage…and I won’t even kick over a few music stands just for effect since my words have done that already.

So lower the curtain, shut off the lights, pop open a HAMMS, and let it all resonate then. Each and every note.





  1. You WILL, because I SAY so!!
  2. Rubbin’ is Racing’ after all….but NOT in F1.
  3. Who’d raced Max’s old man Jap Verstappen back in the day…
  4. That pass COULD have become one of those racing deals, like Hamilton & Rosberg in Spain, but this time smarter heads prevailed
  5. Perhaps….Maybe…. –citation needed–   etc. 
  6. Or a Fantasy Football fan.  Finally, I won my league this season with first the help of Leonard Ulloa and then Jamie Vardy!!
  7. Who’s played well for Chelsea and Stoke City before finally winning at all with Leicester City.
  8. As Told to Edward Woodward, and available soon on Amazon or at an Asda Grocery store near you.
  9. But since I learned my lesson last year regarding Leicester City, I think I’ll put a fiver on it just in case. It’s only a little beer money either way…
  10. Albeit with some changes and revisions to the score
  11. On the troot as the Scottish would…..ok…ok…I’ll shut up now

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