WH Press Distracted by Magic Flute

Apr 4, 2008 2:13pm

ABC’s Jennifer Duck reports: When the White House press corps travels overseas with the President, it is often entertained by local artists and celebrities, sometimes the only taste of the local culture the busy traveling journalists get while covering the developments of state and foreign policy.

But what if the entertainment is simply too compelling and distracts the reporters from their main task?

Reporters traveling with President Bush in Bucharest, Romania today faced just that quandary when they were treated to the song-stylings of the one and only Zamfir, the undisputed king of the pan flute, in the press area of the hotel where the journalists were covering President Bush’s meetings with NATO.

As any watcher of late night television ads from the 1980’s knows, Gheorges Zamfir and his pan flute are mesmerizing –  a fact the press corps was reminded of today when many of them paid more attention to the flute than to the live incoming feed from the NATO meetings. See the video report here from ABC’s  David Kerley. 

The Romanian-style pan flute produces a sound that is something of a cross between a simple wooden recorder and a bird call. Perhaps you’ve heard it during visits to the dentist. Or if you listen carefully, you will recognize Zamfir’s work from some notable films. Zamfir’s music was on the soundtrack of “Once Upon a Time in America,” “The Karate Kid,” and Quentin Tarrantino’s “Kill Bill Vol. 1.”

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