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Ira Sadoff
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Thank you Mary for your thoughtful post. I don't know the Beethoven, though Rysanov has the sweetest, most romantic tone in a Brahms trio I know. I love the arpeggione, but prefer it, inauthentic as it might be, on the cello, especially on the Bows of Queyras, Rostropovich and Starker. Glad you enjoyed the music. Ira
Thanks for your sweet note, Laura. Sharing great music's one of life's inexhaustible pleasures, so I appreciate your generosity.
Last day of blogging and “I’m sweating a lot by now” which is a line from O’Hara’s tribute to Billie Holiday and arguably the best elegy about jazz ever written (“The Day Lady Died”). In my less than grand finale, I want to throw some tunes at you: Ballads, sad tunes that acknowledge the love affairs, troubled or done for, seeming deprivations and losses that plague us, feelings elegiac or just those inexplicable moments where a dark spot shadows us and that feelihng needs to be expressed and shared. I count myself among the multitudes of jazz fans who love... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
The lyrics of two of my favorite jazz standards, “My Favorite Things” and “Tea for Two,” are cheesy, insipid, even infantile bourgeois fantasies; the original vocals seem to me to be sung in that sunny psycho-killer demented spirit: Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens Brown paper packages tied up with strings These are a few of my favorite things and Day will break and I'm gonna wake and start to bake a sugar cake for you to take for all the boys to see. We will raise a family, a boy for... Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
John Coltrane’s 1960 album GIANT STEPS changed the path of modern jazz. Using inverted chord structures,accelerated tempi, changing his reed and ambature (contributing to slightly nasal tone), and, most of all, searching out increasingly complex harmonies, he found his way to his famous “sheets of sound.” I’ve loved this album for –gasp-almost fifty years. Generally when anyone else covers a John Coltrane tune, he or she generally can’t -- to paraphrase Nicanor Parra,-- improve on the blank page. Horn players understand the challenge just as poets must surely be wary of writing about sitting under a tree and translating a... Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
Thanks David. Probably Saw O'Hara there but was too green to know who he was. "The Day Lady Died" is one of my favorite poems of all time. Wrote about it in HISTORY MATTERS.
Roy Haynes, Thelonious Monk, Sonny Rollins and Ahmed Abdul-Malik at the Five Spot Cafe NYC, September 1958 Everyone has an initiation story and some version of mine may seem familiar, but I want to begin this blog with how my early jazz experiences obliquely opened a door to poetry. During the summer of 1961 I was a prisoner of the suburbs, shipped out to an inverse Siberia on Long Island, light years away from my Brooklyn neighborhood. I hated the suburbs then and hate them now for obvious reasons: they’re parochial, isolated, materialistic, high on status and low on diversity.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2012 at The Best American Poetry
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Sep 22, 2012