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Thoughts?


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When I was younger I used to think Miles Davis was overrated. Admittedly I hadn't listened to all of his work and still haven't.

Having read a recent interview of John McLaughlin I listened to Jack Johnson and appreciate him as one of the fathers of fusion along with John McLaughlin.

I now consider his biggest contribution to music is as a sensei, mentor and conductor who put great people together and made them even greater. Having played in Miles Davis band is a credential every bit as honored as a degree from Berklee.

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I started to listen to this last night, but saw that it was ~30 minutes long and aborted. While I'm waiting for it to load this morning, I'll say that my experience was similar to BuckW's. Not so much that I thought that Miles was overrated, but that he was irrelevant to my interests.

Then I found out that he was instrumental (so to speak) in getting Chick Corea going.

Well, that changed things PDQ. I was really into Return To Forever and the idea that if Miles hadn't given Chick's career a boost, I'd never have had Romantic Warrior in my life...hmmm...better take a closer look at this Miles dude.

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Miles Davis circa 1958 was my gateway to all jazz before and after.


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After "Kind of Blue" and his playing on the first side of Cannonball's "Somethin' Else" LP, Miles did not need to do anything else in order to be considered one of the all time greats.

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Originally Posted By: BuckW

I now consider his biggest contribution to music is as a sensei, mentor and conductor who put great people together and made them even greater. Having played in Miles Davis band is a credential every bit as honored as a degree from Berklee.


His biggest contribution to music is his music. The music is fantastic. If you don't get it, that's fine. There is no equivalency between Monk, Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Rod Carter, Tony Williams and your average Berklee grad, none. Jarrett and Zawinul spent about five minutes at Berklee. Not saying Berklee isn't a good school, only that schooling is one thing and playing at Miles' level is something else entirely.

As far as the Santana interview goes I only got through about five minutes. I just finished "Chasing Trane" and thought the Santana interviews were largely BS. Hell, Bill Clinton was more insightful.

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Originally Posted By: burningbusch
Originally Posted By: BuckW

I now consider his biggest contribution to music is as a sensei, mentor and conductor who put great people together and made them even greater. Having played in Miles Davis band is a credential every bit as honored as a degree from Berklee.


His biggest contribution to music is his music. The music is fantastic. If you don't get it, that's fine. There is no equivalency between Monk, Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Rod Carter, Tony Williams and your average Berklee grad, none. Jarrett and Zawinul spent about five minutes at Berklee. Not saying Berklee isn't a good school, only that schooling is one thing and playing at Miles' level is something else entirely.

As far as the Santana interview goes I only got through about five minutes. I just finished "Chasing Trane" and thought the Santana interviews were largely BS. Hell, Bill Clinton was more insightful.

Busch.


+1


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Actually, when I looked into Santana a bit more, I had mixed feelings about his views, and elected to delete this thread! But was prevented from doing so. Specifically, I am 180 degees away from his views of so called "natural" psychodelics. However, much of what he said I found useful.

I quite agree, a Berklee grad, and the Miles Davis level, have little equivalancy.
If you do not get that he was one of the greats in 20th ( or any century ) century music, that's to be expected. Carlos described his understanding of Miles Davis's essence in this interview very well.
And as a leader of musicians, he not only helped Chick Corea, but many others. A unique beacon in a world inclined towards mediocrity, I would say.

Last edited by I-missRichardTee; 12/19/17 02:08 PM.

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Carlos Santana, like Miles Davis, is a product of his time and place. In Carlos's case, living in San Francisco in the '60s, drugs were very much a part of the scene. Miles was of an earlier era, but certainly an era that was also very much aware of drugs.

To try to whitewash either man, to pretend that the drugs weren't there, or didn't influence them and their peers, would distort history. Even if they hadn't taken drugs, some of their band mates would have, and that would still have influenced the music their bands produced.

Revisionist history is not a good idea. There's way too much of that underway already. Don't try to change it--try to understand it in the context of its era. Viewed honestly, it will help you understand our own era, because whether we like it or not, that era helped give rise to ours.

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Originally Posted By: harmonizer
After "Kind of Blue" and his playing on the first side of Cannonball's "Somethin' Else" LP, Miles did not need to do anything else in order to be considered one of the all time greats.


He would be considered one of the all-time greats just for his time with Charlie Parker.

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Breaking news: polarizing figure is polarizing. Details at 11.


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Originally Posted By: GRollins
Carlos Santana, like Miles Davis, is a product of his time and place. In Carlos's case, living in San Francisco in the '60s, drugs were very much a part of the scene. Miles was of an earlier era, but certainly an era that was also very much aware of drugs.

To try to whitewash either man, to pretend that the drugs weren't there, or didn't influence them and their peers, would distort history. Even if they hadn't taken drugs, some of their band mates would have, and that would still have influenced the music their bands produced.

Revisionist history is not a good idea. There's way too much of that underway already. Don't try to change it--try to understand it in the context of its era. Viewed honestly, it will help you understand our own era, because whether we like it or not, that era helped give rise to ours.

Grey


I am without clue, why you went where you went.
Instead of continuing here, can we do this in a PM?
I definitely do not want this to get political, for more than one reason.


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Without speaking for anyone else, I'm guessing he "went there" because you mentioned the psychedelics angle in the post he responded to.


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I didn't watch the video yet, and I don't know if Carlos goes into this or not... But for a brief period in the early 70s, Carlos was (or aspired to be) associating with jazz fusion artists from the Miles camp (such as John McLaughlin, with whom he did a duet album "Love Devotion Surrender").

At around the same time, he was putting jazz fusion elements into the Santana band's albums, for at least 2 or maybe 3 albums... with Caravanserai (1972) being the pinnacle of that period.

Taking all of this into account, it's no surprise to me that he has a common spiritual bond with Miles.


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Originally Posted By: burningbusch

As far as the Santana interview goes I only got through about five minutes. I just finished "Chasing Trane" and thought the Santana interviews were largely BS. Hell, Bill Clinton was more insightful.

Busch.


I watched "Chasing Trane" and the complete interview in the OP. I disagree that Santana's comments were BS in any way or that Bill Clinton was more insightful (though Bill was not bad!). In fact, I don't think I disagreed with anything Santana said.

Nothing earth-shattering here, but there are a few amusing anecdotes.

I recommend people watch the whole interview.

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Originally Posted By: burningbusch

His biggest contribution to music is his music. The music is fantastic. If you don't get it, that's fine. snip


:-) I love caravanserai and welcome and the first 3. Still (I cannot play the vinyl and tapes anymore , they do not work , played to death)
Originally Posted By: burningbusch

As far as the Santana interview goes I only got through about five minutes. I just finished "Chasing Trane" and thought the Santana interviews were largely BS. Hell, Bill Clinton was more insightful.

Busch.
:-))

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Originally Posted By: cedar
Originally Posted By: burningbusch

As far as the Santana interview goes I only got through about five minutes. I just finished "Chasing Trane" and thought the Santana interviews were largely BS. Hell, Bill Clinton was more insightful.

Busch.


I watched "Chasing Trane" and the complete interview in the OP. I disagree that Santana's comments were BS in any way or that Bill Clinton was more insightful (though Bill was not bad!). In fact, I don't think I disagreed with anything Santana said.

Nothing earth-shattering here, but there are a few amusing anecdotes.

I recommend people watch the whole interview.




I think the only Sanata quote in the trailer is "Coltrane's sound rearranges molecular structure." I assume he's using molecular in a scientific sense, to which I can only say, obviously, BS. If he trying to describe something musically, then he should use any of the appropriate, established terms/concepts. I think in the documentary he says something to the effect: "every time I go into a hotel room I put on A Love Supreme and then I know the room is cleansed." I have a low tolerance for Chopak Deepra-esque babble. I guess I'm not on their same level of consciousness as it sounds like BS to my ears.

Busch.

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Originally Posted By: MathOfInsects
Without speaking for anyone else, I'm guessing he "went there" because you mentioned the psychedelics angle in the post he responded to.


Yep. MOI is 100% correct.

Grey


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Originally Posted By: burningbusch

I think the only Sanata quote in the trailer is "Coltrane's sound rearranges molecular structure." I assume he's using molecular in a scientific sense, to which I can only say, obviously, BS.
Busch.



Well, I agree this kind of thing sounds like BS. But that's from the documentary, not the interview in the OP. I thought you were commenting about the interview, which basically steers clear of such talk.

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Originally Posted By: synthizen2
I didn't watch the video yet, and I don't know if Carlos goes into this or not... But for a brief period in the early 70s, Carlos was (or aspired to be) associating with jazz fusion artists from the Miles camp (such as John McLaughlin, with whom he did a duet album "Love Devotion Surrender").


Yeah, but he really didn't mesh with jazz. There is a track with Carlos noodling with Zawinul that is pretty embarrassing.



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Originally Posted By: mate stubb
There is a Every track with Carlos noodling with Zawinul that is pretty embarrassing.


^^^^^


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I like portions of the "Swing of Delight," with Herbie and Wayne. I admit the highlights are Herbie and Wayne solos, but I think Santana fits in fine.

One track. Long intro, but the tune really starts in earnest around the 3 minute mark.


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this thread is way confused about whether it's about Miles or Carlos or interviews in general

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Originally Posted By: BuckW
this thread is way confused about whether it's about Miles or Carlos or interviews in general


no surprise, right?


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Originally Posted By: cedar
I like portions of the "Swing of Delight," with Herbie and Wayne. I admit the highlights are Herbie and Wayne solos, but I think Santana fits in fine.

One track. Long intro, but the tune really starts in earnest around the 3 minute mark.



I have never been a fan of Santana.
The simplest bottom line with Miles, Carlos, Herbie Wayne Hendrix
( Hendrix is brought up in the interview )
Is this... think melodically.
They all have that in common.
Santana has no clue about Bird melodic language... but Miles did.
And Miles was primarily a melodic man.. as are most of us, including Carlos. Miles apparently liked Hendrix, Carlos, John Lee Hooker, Sly, etc . Keeping it simple, I say.. Melody is the thing that ties it all together.


Last edited by I-missRichardTee; 12/20/17 06:41 AM.

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Originally Posted By: I-missRichardTee
I have never been a fan of Santana... but to criticize Wayne and Herbie, which in effect it seems to be the case... hmmm that is going a stretch too far.


Who was criticizing Herbie and Wayne? It certainly wasn't me.

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If we are going to talk about Miles, perhaps we ought to include something about keyboard players. Specifically I would be interested in how folks see the Miles influence on a young Joey DeFrancesco.

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I'm not a Santana fan. I cannot see a Santana - Miles connection. Sorry.


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Originally Posted By: cedar
Originally Posted By: I-missRichardTee
I have never been a fan of Santana... but to criticize Wayne and Herbie, which in effect it seems to be the case... hmmm that is going a stretch too far.


Who was criticizing Herbie and Wayne? It certainly wasn't me.


On reexamining this.. you are correct... my apology. You actually were supportive of Carlos with the heavyweight alumni.


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Originally Posted By: BuckW
this thread is way confused about whether it's about Miles or Carlos or interviews in general


Yeah. What he said. I confess that I am way confused about the direction(s) this thread is heading.

1) Foolish me, I hadn't realized that Carlos Santana was such a polarizing figure. Never run across that before. I've made a mental note to tread lightly when mentioning Santana in the future.

2) Miles Davis was, to many (myself included), a genius. I think that even those who don't respond to his music would acknowledge that he was influential.

3) Drugs? Yeah, that can be pretty polarizing...but I hadn't realized that that was what the thread was about. It was, what, one comment all the way at the very end of the interview? I didn't see it as being important enough to warrant deleting the thread or making a big deal about. I thought everyone knew that Santana did drugs. Maybe I'm wrong.

4) Both Santana and Miles did drugs. Santana seems to think they were a positive influence, both in his life and on his music. Miles's response to drugs was more problematic.

5) My personal choice is not to do drugs, other than alcohol (light to moderate and decreasing as I get older) and pot (haven't done much with it in ages), but this apparently is upsetting to the OP. I'm not clear why or how.

I guess that I could or should have been more attuned to the possibility of distress or conflict when the only text in the original post was, "Thoughts?" That's pretty open-ended. It never occurred to me that the thoughts being invited were (and again, I don't fully understand the undercurrents here) supposed to be negative. My perspective was that Santana was talking about Miles. His comments pertaining to drugs were sort of an afterthought at the end of the interview, yet they seem to overshadow the rest of the things he said, at least in some peoples' minds.

Well, okay...

I've seen Santana several times. I don't know him; we're not BFFs or anything. He's not on my speed dial. I have nothing bad to say about the man and have no intention of condemning him because he did drugs and feels (or felt as of the time of the interview) that they were a positive influence.

That was his choice.

I'm not here to tell others how to live their lives. I make my own choices--in the case of drugs, pretty much not to participate--but prefer to allow others to find their own way.

I gather that my approach to life may not be sitting well with others. With that in mind, and since this thread seems to be bifurcating into pro- and anti-Santana camps (to say nothing of drugs), I think I'll bow out and let others have their disagreements.

Given the season, I'd prefer to sip hot chocolate, admire the lights on the tree, and listen to the kids get excited, ya know?

You guys have fun.

Grey


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I read most of Miles Autobiography. I got weary of reading "I was on the heroin - dried out and got off of it - then I got on the cocaine - dried out - got back on it - blah blah blah ". An oversimplification of course.

Miles said he didn't like marijuana. Gotta wonder about someone who rejects pot and embraces coke. I think he liked being on edge, or something. I saw some documentary on TV years ago. He married a dancer who was working on Broadway in "West Side Story" circa 1960. Miles didn't want her to "work". So she quit. She said when he was doing the cocaine, he'd sometimes call her upstairs - she said she didn't know whether she was going to get beat on, or made love to when he called. There was a hint in a later interview with Miles that he may have hit Cicily Tyson. Airto the famous percussion player said that once (before Airto was known) he complimented Miles when he saw him in a night club - Airto said that Miles' reply crushed his feelings. He also said they became professional friends later on.

My point is that Miles was many times an a$$hole. BUT, Miles was an artist who created a new way of painting a musical canvas. I do NOT think he was in the same category as Stravinsky and Picasso as Santana states. That doesn't discount Miles' work, just that his work wasn't up to their stature in my opinion.

We don't have to like the artist to appreciate their art.


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Originally Posted By: GRollins
Foolish me, I hadn't realized that Carlos Santana was such a polarizing figure. Never run across that before. I've made a mental note to tread lightly when mentioning Santana in the future.


Yep, I have to admit I'm a bit shocked to see quite a bit of "Santana not my thing" around these parts. You know, being that Gregg Rolie's infamous organ parts on iconic tunes like Black Magic Woman, Evil Ways, etc. - were probably what got quite a few folks around here inspired to take up keyboards/organ in the first place.

I often call my keyboard setup "the Gregg Rolie throne" when Facebooking pictures of my rig before gigs.


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I don't think it's news that Miles, from his own words, was not the nicest person. But his impact on jazz is undeniable, as well as his influence on modern music period. If you don't get it, haven't taken the deep dive into his catalog, aren't familiar with his work - or didn't get him when the records first came out, hey I think that was true for a lot of us.

But the work stands up over time, and rewards careful listening with new revelations even now. And his influence on artists we love cannot be overestimated either.

Also agreed that Rolie influenced rock b3 as well.

I think where the rub on Santana comes in for non-rock jazzers was his attempts to work with and record with bona fide jazz and fusion legends. The consensus opinion seems to be "what is that guy bringing to the table with him?" and I'm not aware of any recordings of these collaborations that stand up over time - or that were really musically satisfying when they came out.

A lot of it (to me) is that Santana has his vocabulary that he's developed over his career - he does his Santana thing. And the fusion guys have a much wider musical vocabulary with far more subtlety, nuance and flavor. Their musical palette embraces a lot of different things - and a lot of different ways to say their things - and not so much with Santana. There are other rock guitar guys who have a wider toolbox of sounds, toolbox of note choices, toolbox of grooves...consider inserting Hendrix or Eric Johnson into the same equations and imagine the results. To me, Santana in those spots is sort of like imagining David Gilmour into those spots, if you know what I mean.

But I don't see where anyone has to censor themselves on this forum cause they really dig someone's work that other people don't dig. I haven't judged anyone based on their musical preferences since high school, when kids would carve "framton rules" (sic) into the desk with a knife. "You like Kiss? Kiss sucks...and you suck too!"

Sure I got my lunch stolen for carving "Gilbert O'Sullivan rules!!" and "Harry Nilsson rocks!!" into my desks, but I choose to believe that was mostly because I spelled their names correctly.


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Originally Posted By: timwat

Sure I got my lunch stolen for carving "Gilbert O'Sullivan rules!!" and "Harry Nilsson rocks!!" into my desks, but I choose to believe that was mostly because I spelled their names correctly.
Tim, you write so well. I always enjoy your posts.

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I enjoyed the vast majority of Carlos Santana interview about Miles.
But I happen to have strongly negative opinion of drug use in general.. so I decided to delete it shortly after posting. I feel there are enough misguided people who speak about LSD , to add yet another. I wanted no part in that trend.

Hearing anecdotes about a complex genius, Miles, was entertaining and informative. Fate saw fit, to permit this thread to happen.


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I always get concerned when people talk positively about using consciousness-altering substances. So many lives have been harmed. I'm talking about beer, of course. And wine. And vodka.

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My feelings about Santana have been pretty consistent across the years.

Early Santana with Gregg -> savage, sublime. What he was born to do.
Later Santana without Gregg -> mostly forgettable. Good playing tho.
Santana with John McLaughlin -> all those notes were thrilling to my young self. Hard to listen to now.
Santana with other jazzers -> wrong. Just doesn't mesh.


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Originally Posted By: El Lobo
Tim, you write so well. I always enjoy your posts.


Thank you, that's very kind of you. I appreciate it.

Originally Posted By: mate stubb
My feelings about Santana have been pretty consistent across the years.

Early Santana with Gregg -> savage, sublime. What he was born to do.
Later Santana without Gregg -> mostly forgettable. Good playing tho.
Santana with John McLaughlin -> all those notes were thrilling to my young self. Hard to listen to now.
Santana with other jazzers -> wrong. Just doesn't mesh.


Yes, I find this pretty darn on the mark.

Now, I'm a lifelong Bay Area native, and Santana is an institution out here (along with Tower of Power, the Whispers, etc.), in the sense that once you start gigging with enough long-timers, you're constantly rubbing shoulders with guys and gals who "used to gig with Santana / ToP / Whispers" etc.

He's employed some great players, and made a life's career out of playing music his way - which is something I admire. Great work for a kid from the Mission district.


Last edited by timwat; 12/20/17 03:50 PM.

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In racing, they say that your car goes where your eyes go.

What does that have to do with the price of onions in Malaysia, yeou akst?

This interview has Carlos speaking. so your eyes and mind go to Carlos.
But the article is about MILES DEWEY DAVIS.


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I must be the dummy of the membership. Watched the video and saw one musician speaking about another musician in a non-derogatory and, IMO, insightful manner.

I wasn't misled by comments about drug use (I read Miles autobiography when it first came out and have it sitting on my bookshelf as I write this now). While I am no more for the illicit use of drugs than anyone here, I couldn't perform my daytime work without them. Cocaine for ophthalmic procedures, LSD's progeny Ketamine and, of course, narcotics galore for surgery. Nope, don't use pot in surgery, but I'm told that there are actual dispensaries in my state that sell it for medical use. So saying, I glossed the drug portion of the interview and learned from the rest.

I like both Miles Davis, being a trumpet player and I like Carlos Santana and respect their views for what they are.

I am soooo glad you were not allowed to pull the video I-missRichardTee. I enjoyed it and I'm sure I will again. Thanks.


Don

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Bottom line. Carlos or Miles.... If you hear two notes you know who is playing them. How many folks can you say that about?

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Originally Posted By: retrokeys
Bottom line. Carlos or Miles.... If you hear two notes you know who is playing them. How many folks can you say that about?


Kenny G, Alvin and the Chipmunks, and the dogs that bark Jingle Bells, for a start.


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Originally Posted By: retrokeys
Bottom line. Carlos or Miles.... If you hear two notes you know who is playing them. How many folks can you say that about?


Kenny G.
Belinda Bedekovic


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Tiny Tim.


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Originally Posted By: mate stubb
Originally Posted By: retrokeys
Bottom line. Carlos or Miles.... If you hear two notes you know who is playing them. How many folks can you say that about?


Kenny G.
Belinda Bedekovic


Alright, I'll bite... WHOOOO is Ms Belinda with the funny Slav name?


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Look where this thread has gone. Thanks, mate!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jpr3oe96JU

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