Le Bell Canto by June LeBell

'An Accidental Musical Encounter'

Posted September 27, 2010 at 1:00 pm

by June LeBell

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This was just sent to me by my friend Robert White, one of the world’s great tenors. Robert will be in Sarasota this coming season to speak and sing at Music Monday’s “Great Performers” series during SILL’s upcoming 40th anniversary. As you’ll find if you attend that event, White is not only a great tenor with an illustrious career in music, he is also an ineffable punster.

Although he’s not responsible for this internet gem, he does attribute it to one of his friends, the great British pianist, Graham Johnson. It’s been making the rounds of musical e-mail funnies and you may have already had the pleasure of its company. But it’s worth many re-readings. Enjoy!

“So a C, an E-flat and a G walk into a bar. The bartender says, ‘Sorry, but we don't serve minors.’ So E-flat leaves, and C and G have an open fifth between them. After a few drinks, the fifth is diminished and G is out flat. F comes in and tries to augment the situation, but is not sharp enough.

A D comes in and heads for the bathroom saying, ‘Excuse me. I'll just be a second.’ Then A comes in, but the bartender is not convinced that this relative of C is not a minor. Then the bartender notices B-flat hiding at the end of the bar and says, ‘Get out! You're the seventh minor I've found in this bar tonight.’

E-Flat comes back the next night in a three-piece suit with nicely shined shoes. The bartender says, ‘You're looking sharp tonight. Come on in, this could be a major development.’ Sure enough, E-flat soon takes off his suit and everything else, and is au natural. Eventually, C, who had passed out under the bar the night before, begins to sober up and realizes in horror that he's under a rest.

So, C goes to trial, is convicted of contributing to the diminution of a minor and sentenced to 10 years of DS without Coda at an up scale correctional facility. The conviction is overturned on appeal, however, and C is found innocent of any wrongdoing, even accidental, and that all accusations to the contrary are bassless.
The bartender decides, however, that since he's only had tenor so patrons, the soprano out in the bathroom and everything has become alto much treble, he needs a rest and closes the bar.”

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