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Thread: Violin Self-Pity Piece?

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    Senior Member Margaret's Avatar
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    Question Violin Self-Pity Piece?

    In old movies when someone felt sorry for themselves this violin piece would play. I figured it for Italian but that might have had more to do with the surroundings as I recall someone sitting at a table in an Italian restaurant feeling sorry for themselves and this guy would come up behind him playing this piece on the violin. It became such a standard that after a while they didn't even need the violin & music, someone would play an air violin, even with just their fingers as they would say "I'm playing the world's smallest violin for you" to evoke it. Now the phrase "playing the violin" has entered the popular vernacular to indicate self-pity & lack of sympathy with it that's how much a part of the culture those old movie scenes have become.

    My question is does anyone remember what piece was played on the violin for those self-pity scenes?

    Or alternatively, does anyone recall a specific movie where the "violin playing self-pity piece" actually played?

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    Senior Member handlebar's Avatar
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    I remember a film where "Poeme" by Chausson was played when a man cried in his soup.
    Cannot recall the name of the film but it was a black and white film from the 50's.

    Jim

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    Senior Member PostMinimalist's Avatar
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    The music is called Hearts and Flowers.
    It has its own Wiki page!
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hearts_and_Flowers

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    Senior Member Margaret's Avatar
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    "Hearts and Flowers" that's it, thank you!

    I found the clip on youtube and could recognize it when I heard it.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uS5xPWfxPY

    (That's an interesting youtube video. He's playing a record that I think must have been made for a Victrola because it's from 1908. He must be using a special record player because that spins faster than 33 1/3 or 45rpm. I assume it's a 78; that's the fastest I've ever seen on a record player.)

    I was looking for a piece and thought it might be what I know now is "Hearts and Flowers" because it was played to someone feeling really sorry for herself and it reminded me of it. So I figured it was that standard violin piece, but I couldn't remember song's melody.

    The start of the clip (it's only 16 seconds) matches "Hearts and Flowers" at 25 seconds on that youtube clip, but it's different after that.
    http://www.houndbite.com/?houndbite=10191

    The piece is so short that I can't tell if it's supposed to be a different song (though those matching notes and the identical context would be some coincidence if it's a different song entirely) or if it's just supposed to be a different arrangement of "Hearts and Flowers."

    What do you all think: same song with different arrangement or entirely different song?

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    Senior Member PostMinimalist's Avatar
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    You're welcome!
    FC

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