Horned Prog: Set 1: Breakfast in Prague

by nielskunze on March 11, 2019

Snickelfrizz

The Horned Prog progect began with the purchase of the 1969 album Chicago Transit Authority. I had heard too many times how essential this album was to any rock music– or even prog rock– collection. Upon listening to the album a dozen times or so, I had to agree. This was genre-bending stuff!

Of course I wasn’t completely new to Chicago; I just hadn’t afforded them much close scrutiny and attention, knowing them mainly from their radio hits from my childhood in the seventies. Once I realized that Chicago were indeed a progressive outfit in the strictest sense, I took it upon myself to invent the Horned Prog sub-genre under the grandiose umbrella of prog music in general. And then I embarked upon a journey to find suitable songs to mix with them for my own unique listening pleasure.

I’ve always been a “mixed tape” guy. I’ve spent a lifetime arranging exhibitions of musical variety in order to satisfy some innate sense of content-in-context… because context is everything. Songs need to be displayed– showcased– in the right manner to capture their historic significance and unique artistic spirit. And listening to complete albums, although having its place– especially in the prep phase, couldn’t satisfy my need for big-picture sculpting. It always seemed to me that the songs “wanted” to be arranged like puzzles, colouring in history and placating some subtle psychological need.

What I didn’t expect at the outset of the Horned Prog progect was the sheer volume of suitable tunes for crafting these tapestries. In recent years, the internet has opened up a world of heretofore hidden treasures, making them accessible to all. What I have done here I have done mainly for my own pleasure, but in the true spirit of music– a thing based firmly in shared experience– I offer these mixes to you.

Although we begin in Chicago, we immediately take flight to the far distant lands of Iron Curtain secrecy, and find, surprisingly, that the music of the times, the early seventies, was just as fresh and exciting in communist regimes as it was in the west. Artists will be artists; the spirit won’t be repressed!

Horned Prog 1

Tracks:

  • Does Anyone Really Know What Time It Is? -Chicago (Transit Authority)
  • Ma Hra (My Game) -Blue Effect
  • Pauk (Spider) -Jazz Orkestar Radio-Televizije Beograd
  • Globus -Jaan Kuman Instrumental Ensemble
  • Shorter -Theo Schumann Formation
  • Tentakel -Walter Kubiczeck
  • Make Me Smile Medley -Chicago (Tanglewood concert)
  • Za Krokem Zen -Blue Effect
  • Jazz Comfort -USSR 1979
Horned Prog 2

Tracks:

  • Svadbena Igra Kraj Bistrice -Jazz Orkestar Radio-Televizije Beograd
  • Clinging Ivy -Blue Effect
  • A Hit By Varese -Chicago
  • Straight to the Krankenhaus -Secret Oyster
  • House Party -Houseband (Dutch Rare Grooves)
  • Soul Party -The Free (Dutch Rare Grooves)
  • From the Back -Curt Cress Clan
  • Fibonacci’s Number -If
  • Mother Focus -Focus
  • Tamara’s Love -Focus
  • I Couldn’t Write and Tell You -If
  • Saturday in the Park -Chicago
  • Portrait -Prague Big Band

Each instalment of the Horned Prog progect will consist of two one-hour (approximately) sets of mixed music. Strap in for a long and wild ride!

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