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Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

Friday Night Forgotten Oldie: They had to wing it

Friday Night Forgotten Oldie; Nostalgia

Before we get into the Forgotten Oldie, some news this week from ABC:

Music aficionados have long touted the virtues of vinyl, arguing that CD’s and MP’3s are no match for the depth and warmth of sound offered by the grooves inside an LP. Now, as the popularity of vinyl soars, companies that cater to the medium are tapping into the fastest-growing music sales format by offering everything from battery-powered record players that come in a rainbow of colors to sleek mahogany turntables with LED displays and iPod jacks.


So, what constitutes a Forgotten Oldie?

It’s an oldie you may not have heard in like, decades.

Or it could be one that receives little, if any radio play.

Is it possible that a gigantic record by a gigantic group or solo artist could be a Forgotten Oldie?

Yes, it is possible.

In 1967, British band Procol Harum released their first album and like so many before or since self-titled the LP.

One of the tracks was the famous “Whiter Shade of Pale” that featured a Hammond organ line derived from Bach. It wasn’t included in the album released in the UK, but the very popular single was on the album put out in the US.

Another track was “Conquistador.” Band member Gary Brooker wrote the music with a Spanish flavor  before the words were written.
Conquistadors were Spanish soldiers who set out to conquer the Americas after their discovery by Christopher Columbus in 1492.

Procol Harum recorded “Conquistador” live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra on November 18, 1971. It was released in 1972 on the album, “Procol Harum Live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra.”

It’s been reported that as the band flew from London to Canada for the concert, Brooker noticed the program did not include any fast-paced material. Brooker and the group settled for that Spanish track from their first album.

“It was a song about the Spanish horse warriors...well it's not really...but they're mentioned. So I thought up this new arrangement and wrote it on the plane. I finished it off in the hotel room. It was quite simple – an intro and a bit in the middle. The rest just followed what the band had played. I wrote it all out as quickly as I could and it was given to a copier to provide the parts for the orchestra. We never had a chance to rehearse it, because they wouldn't let our gear through the Canadian customs. We ended up doing the rehearsal with half a drum kit and a rehearsal amplifier. Our own gear was lost. We eventually had three hours rehearsal but that was it. We never did rehearse Conquistador. Remember, this was a full symphony orchestra that had never played with a rock band before. One of the violin players was wearing a crash helmet in order to cut down the volume. We had one rough rehearsal, just took a look at the parts and then we had a quick rehearsal in the hall on the day. By the end they were getting the idea," said Brooker.

The live album made it to #5 on the charts.

The live version of “Conquistador” reached #16 on the Billboard charts.

From August 2006, Procol Harum performs with the Denmark National Concert Orchestra and choir at Ledreborg Castle, Denmark.



Conquistador your stallion stands in need of company
And like some angel's haloed brow
You reek of purity
I see your armor plated breast
Has long since lost its sheen
And in your death mask face
There are no signs which can be seen
And though I hoped for something to find
I could see no maze to unwind

Conquistador a vulture sits, upon your silver sheath
And in your rusty scabbard now, the sand has taken seed
And though your jewel-encrusted blade
Has not been plundered still
The sea has washed across your face
And taken of its fill
And though I hoped for something to find
I could see no maze to unwind

Conquistador there is no time, I must pay my respect
And though I came to jeer at you
I leave now with regret
And as the gloom begins to fall
I see there is no aureole
Though you came with sword held high
You did not conquer, only die
And though I hoped for something to find
I could see no maze to unwind
And though I hoped for something to find
I could see no maze to unwind

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