Meditating Four – Meditácia nad vášňou
from compilation “Beatová horúčka 1965-70”, 1989, Opus 90132113
original 1989 compilation LP sleeve
Let’s have a look at one of the more obscure tracks from this already quite obscure music blog. The Meditating Four was a legendary Slovak beat and blues combo around 1967 and 1968. The group’s master mind was the singer and guitarist Jozef “Barry” Barina. Earlier he also used to play with another Slovak beat legend, the surf-influenced Players.
Meditácia nad vášňou (Meditation About Passion) is not really a spectacular song. It’s just another variation on the classic twelve bar blues, albeit with a little “twist”. Still, Barina who was then only twenty years old plays some fine guitar licks and the drummer hits it hard and quite funky, making the song sound more like early progressive rock. That puts it relatively ahead of its time, at least in local dimensions. The song has been originally released on a Supraphon seven inch in 1969, the group’s only record. But already in late 1968 they have actually disappeared from the scene. Barina revived the band for another tour in 1971 before he started to work in some Slovak studio orchestras. In the early 1980s he returned to playing the blues with B-Profil. He still ocassionally performs in Bratislava with various blues bands.
The vinyl compilation Beatová horúčka 1965-70 (Beat Fever) has been available on eBay recently. In the 1990s it has been reissued on CD too, but obviously it’s already out of print. There are fourteen rare tracks from Slovak beat groups like the Players, Beatmen, Soulmen, Blues Five, Prúdy or Modus, among others. I will present the “killer” track from that album on Funky Czech-In in a couple of weeks, so stay tuned…