Classical Gas

Classical Gas

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Classical Gas

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"Classical Gas" is an instrumental musical piece composed and originally performed by Mason Williams. Originally released in 1968 on the album The Mason Williams Phonograph Record, it has been re-recorded and re-released numerous times since by Williams. One later version served as the title track of a 1987 album by Williams and the orchestra Mannheim Steamroller. The most notably popular variation was that of Tommy Emmanuel.

Williams re-recorded "Classical Gas" as a solo guitar piece on his 1970 album Handmade. In 1987, he recorded a version with Mannheim Steamroller. The song was also re-released by Sony in 2003, after being featured in the film Cheaper by the Dozen.

Williams was the head writer for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour at the time of the piece's release and premiered the composition on the show. Williams performed it several times over several episodes. After the piece had reached the Top Ten, Williams asked an experimental filmmaker named Dan McLaughlin to create a video montage of classical art works edited in time to the music, using the visual effect now known as kinestasis. The pioneering work, 3000 Years of Art, premiered in the summer of 1968 and may have helped push the song high on the charts.

During the 1970s and early 1980s, many television stations (such as WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh, WBAL-TV in Baltimore and KNTV in San Jose) used the composition - or a version of it re-recorded by......
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