Category Archives: Video

Good King Wenceslas … or is it?

Transcription available

Level: Int/Adv     Tuning: Standard Tuning


Includes Transcription + MP3

Good King Wenceslas always struck me as a bit odd when I was a kid. I liked the tune. But the lyrics seemed a bit different from other Christmas carols in that they didn’t seem to specifically reference Christmas itself.

“Away in a manger … “ , “Hark the herald angels sing, glory to the new born king”, “O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of the dear Saviour’s birth. “. Those sort of carols are pretty obvious.

But “Good King Wenceslas looked out, on the Feast of Stephen …”? We didn’t even know what the Feast of Stephen was. For me, it always brought up an image of him watching people eating.

Interestingly, Good King Wenceslas was originally published in a collection of carols for Easter, not Christmas. It is only over time that it has become so closely associated with Christmas instead. Thank goodness the Feast of Stephen is on December 26, so there is at least a proximity connection.

Tempus adest floridum

Tempus adest floridum

But setting aside the original connection to Easter, for me there is a much greater issue I wrestle with when I have too much time on my hands.

The lyrics for Good King Wenceslas were written in the mid-19th-century. But the tune itself is taken from Tempus adept floridum, a 13th-century Finnish carol.

If I play an instrumental version of the song – ie. without the lyrics – am I really playing Good King Wenceslas? Or am I actually playing Tempus adept floridum?

This sort of existential angst always gives me a headache and provides an excellent excuse to reach for the eggnog and rum.

Happy holidays, everyone.

The Peter Gunn Theme (aka The Brand New Anniversary Waltz)

This is a special Anniversary Edition of my arrangement of the classic Peter Gunn Theme by Henri Mancini. Why an Anniversary Edition? Well, it’s easier for you to watch to find out than it is for me to explain. 🙂

This was recorded at the 2007 Chet Atkins Appreciation Society convention in Nashville – still one of the best events for live guitar music. Highly recommended

Part 1

Part 2

Things We Said Today

Ah, it never rains but it pours, eh? Hot on the heels of posting On the Tip of the Tongue on YouTube, I’ve also posted a clip of my solo arrangement of The Beatles’ Things We Said Today, taken from the same concert in Saskatoon this September.

Check it out when you have a chance, tell your friends, and let’s give “Where the Hell is Matt?” a run for his money. 🙂

By the way, in case you haven’t run across the “Where the Hell is Matt?” video, do check it out. It is a curious creation that I am surprised to find remains emotionally uplifting even after four or five viewings. If you find yourself needing a little pick me up, there’s a very good chance this will give it to you.

In the meantime, here’s one for fans of The Beatles …

On the Tip of the Tongue Video

Well, I have finally managed to start to catch up on 21st century technology trends by posting my first video on YouTube! Can fame and fortune be far behind? 🙂

The song is On the Tip of the Tongue recorded at a recent concert in Saskatoon (… Saskatchewan … Canada ). It’s not a flashy, wowza!, showstopper; just a quiet little piece that means a lot to me.

For the guitarists out there, click here for a transcription of this piece.