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Riddle Me This...

Walker

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The learned and those who wait will hear my soft voice amongst the woodwind.

Incidentally, back in the 1970s, courage gave me a chance to play, in the shadow of a hill, but I never milked it.

Sure, top brass may make a big entrance, but I was not squeezed out of the family.


Who am I? Where was I?


Why not take us through the clues... if you can!​
 

NickC

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Interesting. The short answer: I don't know.

At first, I was thinking that is had something to do with the French horn. It often plays with the woodwinds and, while I wouldn't call it a 'soft' voice, it is much mellower than the other brass family instruments. It is also used in woodwind quintets. Other brass, like trumpets, trombones and tuba often make big entrances, while the French horn blends well with the winds. But, 'Who' and 'Where', I don't know. Also, I'm not sure the significance '1970's' and 'shadow of a hill.'
 

Walker

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Gentlemen, you show you are wise, but orchestral it is not, think inside the box... And the box on which we set our gaze!

Who squeezed the chords after the trumpet blast, to bring sunshine and moonshine and thoughts of olden days?
 
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losthobos

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I'd settle for a bottle of moonshine in the sunshine anyday...cheers ?
 

Walker

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You are getting warm, there is a cassotto accordion. But who did play this instrument?

Few noticed he was even here! On a show watched by countless millions every year.

For now I say - goodnight NickC, goodnight Waldo, goodnight losthobos.
 

lmschgo

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The character named Jim-Bob on one of the episodes of The Waltons?
 

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Walker

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Good attempt Imschgo, very good. And yes, the show was The Waltons. I will work through the riddle now and see if we can unravel it...

(Statement 1) The learned and those who wait will hear my soft voice amongst the woodwind.

Michael Learned and John Waite were the parents Olivia and John Walton in the television show, The Waltons. The soft voice is just a subtle reference to the tone of the instrument that played alongside the woodwind section.

(Statement 2) Incidentally, back in the 1970s, courage gave me a chance to play, in the shadow of a hill, but I never milked it.

'Incidentally' refers to the 'incidental music' - that was woven through the show to enhance the drama, emotion etc. of the story. The 1970s - it simply refers to the decade the show started. Courage, or I should say, Alexander Courage, was an American composer for television and film - who wrote the incidental sequences, including our musician's part.

The shadow of a hill, well that's Walton's Mountain.

But I never milked it. This is a small joke – you see 'Chance' was the name of the Walton family's cow! That, and the music was quite subtle.

(Statement 3) Sure,
top brass may make a big entrance, but I was not squeezed out of the family.

Top brass, refers to the trumpet led theme tune of The Waltons. There is an accordion present, but it's the trumpet that's the boss here.

Finally, squeezed – an accordion reference, and family - The Waltons.

Knowing all this does not mean we will know which accordionist I am refering to. That requires a bit more digging... Jim-Bob Walton is a good answer! However, the key to success would have been connecting the incidental music to the composer Courage. This was a tough riddle! Maybe the extra clues helped a bit. But who was the accordionist? Oh yes, that was Frank Marocco.​

The Los Angeles Times on 20th April 2008 wrote - One of his early experiences was doing “The Waltons.” Composer Alexander Courage “would write for a small woodwind section that would have the flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon and accordion. And he would write me little clusters -- two-, three-, four-note chords -- to blend in with the other woodwinds, so he had a nice, full woodwind section.”

 
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lmschgo

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Walker, in your earlier post you wrote: For now I say - goodnight NickC, goodnight Waldo, goodnight losthobos.
That was a big clue (if that was your intention) for my guess. If I am recalling correctly, each episode of The Waltons ended with family members saying goodnight to each other
 

Walker

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Imschgo, I had a realisation that it was actually a very difficult riddle. You see, when writing a riddle, it is essential to know the answer before you start. Perhaps this made me underestimate how tricky it was. Yes, I wanted to give a big clue and I am glad you found it. To have worked it out otherwise would have required a significant knowledge of The Waltons, in addition to our accordion knowledge.

Here's a tip - if anyone ever asks, who played the accordion bit in this film or that, just say Frank Marocco... you will be right more often than not?
 
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