Although many artists make music to speak something from their heart, there’s no telling how it will affect people after that.
While all kinds of different businesses and industries change over the years, one thing that seems to never go out of style is the power of a compelling piece of art. Still, once you take your hands off of something you’ve created, it ends up taking on a life of its own. The most successful songs and movies easily make their way all around the world and speak to people of many different cultures.
Without a doubt, music is one of the most easily translatable art forms to do this.
As anyone who loves classic rock knows, The Eagle’s “Hotel California” is one of the world’s most successful and recognizable songs.
Besides the lyrics commenting on decadence and decay in hippie culture in the 1970s, it also has an incredibly mysterious and beautiful melody that’s instantly recognizable. It’s also something that many people probably wish they could play. As it turns out, the song is also popular all over the world—even in places like Korea.
As this performance shows, anybody can feel a piece of art or music and find a way to make it their own.
This clip comes from the 8th Annual Acoustic Guitar Competition held in Korea.
The performer in question is Minsung Gong, who has rearranged the song to be suited for one acoustic guitar. As anyone who is familiar with the original knows, this in itself is no easy task! When The Eagles played the song, they had two guitarists, a drummer and a bass player as well. In Gong’s version, all of those parts are compressed into one, lyrical and soul-stirring piece of music.
Needless to say, his version is one that rivals the original!
As it starts, it becomes clear that he’s playing an arrangement of the live version of the song from The Eagles’ “Hell Freezes Over.”
At the beginning is a longer, Spanish-guitar inspired passage which takes its time building up the rhythm and the melody. Because Gong takes his time with it, the audience can hear him build up the melody, the rhythm and the percussion portions of the song into his playing—except he’s doing it all himself! As the song progresses, Gong moves into the recognizable melody and everything hits its swing.
Still, the song keeps going after that!
Throughout the performance, Gong shows his incredible finger-picking technique and his feel for the music.
Still, the very best part comes at the end when he gets into the long solo. Much like the beginning, there’s a slow melodic feel about it that really accents the song’s Spanish influences. Throughout the entire thing, you can tell he’s completely absorbed by playing everything just perfectly. When it’s all over, he gives the guitar four final hard strums.
At the end of it all, the audience bursts into applause!
If you’re a fan of “Hotel California” or The Eagles, you definitely owe it to yourself to check out this incredible cover!
Though it’s long been a popular song, Gong shows with his version that there’s always room to breathe a little bit of new life into a classic. Although his playing throughout the tune is incredibly intricate and technical, you can tell that he understands the emotional heart of the song as well. Needless to say, this is a video we’ll be returning back to again and again.
Congratulations to Minsun Gong on a truly incredible performance! Check out the full thing below:
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