Come all ye rambling boys of pleasure…

Two days ago, Famous Orchestra bassist Riley Broach went on YouTube looking for video footage that people might have uploaded from our shows this past weekend in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. What he found instead was a cover of our song “Ich Bin Berlin (The Sundown Song)” from a seemingly unlikely source: a band called the Rambling Boys of Pleasure who make their home in Ghent, Belgium.The song appeared on our CD Everything for Everyone.

Here’s the video, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_IwkDzgu6U:

The information they provided with the video says the following:

I’m puttin’ on my sunday best! I’m puttin’ it to the test! Een cover van The Viper and His Famous Orchestra. Stijn op ukulele, Clo doet percussie, David op bas en Godfried op gitaar. Nu nog een beetje oefenen op onze stage presence. πŸ™‚

Which, using a Dutch-English online translator (Dutch being the closest thing I could find to Flemish as far as online translators go), I can render thusly:

I’m puttin’ on my sunday best! I’m puttin’ it to the test! A cover of The Viper and His Famous Orchestra. Stijn on ukulele, Clo doing percussion, David on bass and Godfried on guitar. Now we just need to work on our stage presence. πŸ™‚

As Riley wrote in posting a link to the video to his Facebook profile: “Woah! Stop the phones, halt the advance, turn down the lights!” Trombonist Rob Henn’s comment was representative: “Holy crap. Where did you find this? WTF????”

Rob then himself posted a link to his profile, noting:

This is the most bizarre thing I’ve ever seen. I may even mean that literally. I believe it to be the first cover of a song by The Viper and His Famous Orchestra — and it’s by a group in Belgium. I assume they found our CD online somehow, …randomly, and then covered it. I s*** you not. A group in Belgium covered a song by an obscure niche band from Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. We live in an internet world.

And the song itself is a pretty niche song even within the Viper repertoire: a late 1990s period piece about semi-urban sprawl and the increasingly far-flung commercial/entertainment districts of Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. How these Belgian ramblers found and then figured out the song is something I’ll take up in a later post, along with my subsequent communication with at least one of the Rambling boys. For now, I’ll just confirm that they did find our CD online “somehow”; and that I know how, and that it is indeed an internet world.

3 thoughts on “Come all ye rambling boys of pleasure…”

  1. You’ll be pleased to know there’s a growing swing revival going on in Belgium. Check out radiomodern.be: they throw parties in the swellest dance halls across the country (mostly Ghent, Antwerp and Brussels), where the girls get dolled up, the boys (try to) wear their sunday best, and youngsters re-learn to foxtrot and swing. It’s a blast!

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