Jazz Hams

I didn’t realize how much Chico Hamilton I had in my mp3 collection. Scattered over various complications I have The Dealer; El Chico; Man From Two Worlds; The Further Adventures of El Chico; Easy Livin’; A Different Journey; and as stand-alone the Quintet Complete.

Chico was a much sought master percussionist who recorded thousands of tracks with too many jazz greats to list. Mostly notably (to me) Gabor Szabo. He also led various groups of his own. He could be understated or dominating depending on what he was called to do. Latin, swing, modern, experimental – he did it all. His group recordings are solid bop work, his many recordings with Szabo are worth seeking out.

Close to him on the shelf is the BlueNote compilation: Heros of The Hammond. Tracks selected from their immense back catalogue of work by Jimmy McGriff, ‘Bother’ Jack McDuff & others, this is an excellent introduction to jazz organ. Some in the Jimmy Smith mode, others Booker T. I love this organ sound that lead to the fun farfisa sound of garage rock & the progressive rock of ELP.

Next is an lp to cd transfer of Lionel Hampton’s Steppin’ Out. He played a very swinging jazz vibraphone and his recordings are endless as band leader & sideman. Equally at home in big and or small combos his playing is lively & tasteful. Steppin’ Out is no exception & makes a good start if you are unfamiliar with this subgenera or if you’ve only heard Gary Burton’s more modern/experimental work.

Fool

The boots had been the the back of the closet. I hadn’t cleaned here is some time, at least that’s what the layer of dust accused me of not doing. I recognized the boots instantly.

Calf-high cowboy boots. Tan leather with some deep red scroll fan-like inserts. Heels well worn, one toe scuffed. Dave had worn these daily for months. How could he have left these when he moved out? How could I have missed them till now?

I brushed the dust off them. My cleaning stopped dead in its tracks. I took them into the kitchen to clean them better. The leather was stiff and dry but a little dubbin could bring it back to life. 

Dave. Dave. Dave. Where are you now? I never really understood what went wrong. At the moment I saw the sense but now, looking back, it made no sense at all.

Impulsively I pulled the boots on. His feet were a size smaller than mine, but these were always big on him. Maybe that’s why he left them behind. The calf of the boot was tight, the ankle tighter, but I forced my toes past instep and they were on. Tight. My baby toes pained.

Dave’s boots! He never would have let me wear them when he was around. I took a few unsteady steps. The heels made me inches taller and the smooth soles slid on the floor. I could walk in them, but not far, unless I wanted to have my big toe and little toe surgically removed.

I went to the study and found the photo album of our trip through the desert and the dude ranch we stayed at for a couple of weeks. The first summer. God, Dave you were a gorgeous man. Ah, there are those boots, too. You were so proud of them. City boy gets his first cowboy boots.

There we are at the waterfall outside of Pikesville. Sex there was wild. Afraid some tourist family would pull up. Mom, Pop, Sis and Junior would catch these buck naked bare-ass guys in a frenzy under the crashing water. No one caught us though.

That summer was so sweet.

I tottered back the the kitchen.

‘Boots, you are heading the way of all trash.’

I sat on a kitchen chair and began to pull. It was as if the boot was glued to my foot. I first tried one then the other. Permanently attached to my feet. I yanked and struggled but neither would budge more than a scant nano-inch and ripped at the skin on the back of my ankle. I’d need to have my heel removed to get them off. Scissors? Cut them off? 

What a fool I was to let you go, Dave. What a fool. 

https://wp.me/P1RtxU-2f6

every Tuesday 2019

September

17 – Shaw Festival – Sex (Mae West)

22 – Stratford Festival – Little Shop Of Horrors

24 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Buddies and Bad Times Theatre

October

15 – Stratford Festival – The Crucible

November

7 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Buddies and Bad Times Theatre

December

The Secret Handshake Gallery – feature – date TBA

January

23 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Buddies and Bad Times Theatre

March

March 5 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Buddies and Bad Times Theatre

April

April 3 – Hot Damn! It’s Queer Slam – Season 6 finales Buddies andBbad Times Theatre

June  – Capturing Fire 2020 – Washington D.C.  capfireslam.org 

Hey! Or you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington at 2020’s capfireslam.org – sweet, eh? paypal.me/TOpoet

Funky Black Organs

Hey lets get retro & super funky with some Booker T. & the M.G’s. My stand alone’s are Best of 1, Melting Pot, Best of 2. Plus the anthology: Time is Tight (an mp3 collection) which is supposedly the complete but didn’t include the ultra fantastic Christmas Album, so I’m not sure how complete it is 🙂

yellowflowers

leaning out for love

I once had the Best of 1 as a cassette – Hang’Em High is sweet fun. The CD is inclusive what was on the cassette with more. Best of 2 has more of the earlier hits: Green Onions etc. These are instrumentals that were copied in hundred of films as parody or homage to the swinging hip youth of the time. Though I don’t think B.T & M.G’s ever did a film soundtrack.

transformer

pole wrapped in love

Melting Pop is their masterpiece – it slips from soul-pop to funk to jazz with such ease you may not even notice it. Amazing wordless chorus work is layered in on some cuts. Long & almost leisurely I hear the clear connection between Booker &, of all groups, Pink Floyd – spacey organ & guitar drifting. This is an lp I wore out & was eager to replace as CD. I first heard it on the east coast thanks to a hot married man I had had a crush on (he never came across but did enjoy catching my eye and adjusting himself.)

brownbear

drowned by love

The anthology collection is great too, all the hits I have on the stand alones are there. The sound is jazzy, soulful, funky, if at times a bit kitchy – those covers of pop hits i.e. Mrs. Robinson don’t come across as genuine. I was already a fan of Jimmy Smith by then so it was easy to go from Smith’s jazzy sound to Booker’s. Smith also got stuck doing covers of pop songs. How to sell jazz in the 60’s was a puzzlement.

sample

Candle

‘Did a kid about five foot nothing, in ragged shorts and a blood spattered T-shirt run past here in the past few minutes?’

‘No.’

‘Is there any other way out the plaza?’ Sgt. McLland asked.

‘No.’

‘Then he must have come this way.’

‘Then why ask?’

‘If this is the only way he must have passed you.’

‘No. I wasn’t here. I just got here myself. Does that answer your question.’

‘No.’

‘Perhaps he went into the church.’

‘Church?’ Sgt. McLland asked.

The plaza was surrounded by dull office buildings.

‘Yes, a modern miracle. Looks like just another office building in the square but it is a church. L’Eglesa de Madrea Gaudalope. He may have gone in there to light a candle.

‘Thank you. Which is the church?’

‘All doors lead to the same place.’

Sgt. McLland pushed the door of the nondescript building open. It moved with a long slow creak. If someone had come in here he would have heard that. The building was a shell, inside was a single room several stories high. He was nearly blinded by the light that flooded in from all sides.

At the far end of the room was an alter with a vast crucifix suspended over it. Each of his footsteps echoed in the dusty stillness. He could hear his own breath.

A flight of sparrows startled him. He turned around and Jaspito stood, wide eyed, clutching a tall thin white candle. The wax dripped over his hand, some had splashed on to his ragged shorts.

‘I have done nothing. The Virgin she will tell you.’

In the air between them the Virgin appeared in a long pale blue shift that tapered into a mist.

‘Be gentle with the child. He is guilty but if I forgive you must forgive as well.’

‘I did nothing Virgin. I did nothing.’

The apparition turned to Jaspito. ‘My son this nothing to you is a great sin to me, to others. If you do not see that then there is no hope for your salvation. I cannot protect you.’

‘Sacred Mother I did no harm. Please. Why do you not believe me.’

McLland stepped past the apparition and put his around arm the boy.

‘I will take care of him Mother.’

‘No it is too late. He came for my sacred protection.’ her hands reached out to him.

As Jaspito rose into the air he began to tremble, the melted wax flicked down on McLland.

 

soon

September 3-6 – attending – Fan Expo

Expo15

( I’ve registered already 🙂 )

http://fanexpocanada.com

October 18, Sunday – feature: Cabaret Noir: Inner Child Sacrifice

noiroc

https://www.facebook.com/events/668001953300594/

November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo

nano02

http://nanowrimo.org/

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greentoy

Airto Moreira

Airto Moreira first came to my attention thanks to Chick Corea’s Light As A Feather. Airto was everywhere at one time: from Miles Davis, Bitches Brew, to work with Weather Report, John McLaughin & Keith Jarrett. I have lots of his work with these jazz icons. In fact he is one of those icons himself.

trunk03 who saw you?

He’s recorded extensively with his wife Flora Purim and also has many releases under his own name. On one of my mp3 compilations I have Virgin Land, In Concert w/Deodato, Fingers & Identity. All dupes from Lp or direct downloads. I can remember buying the original Lps, some from Cheapies on Yonge Street.

trunk01 how old am I?

Brazilian rhythms ground his music which runs from almost traditional folk to jazz fusion to pure jazz. His tracks on the Deodato concert are amazing (too bad Deodato is such a snooze).

trunk02

stumped again

Also on this cd is Chico Hamilton: The Dealer – which features more Latin rhythms with the amazing Gabor Szabo on guitar. Al Hirt: Music To Watch Girls By – a sixties radio throwback; Jimmy Smith: Peter & The Wolf – yes, this a jazz version of the classical suite – fun & funky; Joe Pass: The Stones Jazz – yes, instrumental versions of the Rolling Stones – some of which work; Tough Young Tenors: Alone Together – more contemporary than the rest of the compilation – great hot playing by a handful of excellent, young sax players. You know they must have amazing tongue control 🙂

sample

Unfolding The Map

As the last of Jill’s clothes fell to the carpet Jack felt he finally stood on the border of manhood. The blue-pink light from the television in the corner of the hotel room rippled on the wall, danced on Jill’s bare skin.

‘Like what you see?’ she stepped towards him and undid the top button of his shirt.

He didn’t know how to convey the confusion of this moment, to tell her that he wanted to look, to stare but to have a real woman there made him feel embarrassed, ashamed of his need to look.

‘Uh … yes.’ He wished that the news announcer would tell him just what to do next, that the weather map would show which highs and lows his hands were to reach for first.

His skin was cool and then warm once his shirt had dropped to the ground. He resisted the temptation to pick it up, to fold it neatly on a chair. Jill’s breasts were hot against him. His arms moved around her of their own volition.

‘Mmmm.’ Jill’s mouth opened to his.

He’d imagined many times what this would be like, he’d watched enough adult videos to know what was supposed to happen, but now that it was happening to him, he was unsure, unscripted. He felt watched by the news announcer, now the sports announcer, soon to be a talk show host telling jokes.

Should he turn off the TV? No. The light was fine but perhaps he should turn it down.

The Leafs had scored, a race was run, he moved towards the bed with Jill. It seemed she was doing as much of the lean to the bed as he was.

‘There. There,’ she moaned as his hands moved slowly along her sides. ‘Why don’t you get out of … ’ she gave his belt buckle a gentle tug.

‘Yes yes.’ He sat and pulled at his shoes laces, knotting one of them. He stood to slide his jeans off, the shadow of his erection sprung across the wall.

My what a big shadow you cast, he though.

‘Come on Jack. We don’t have all night you know.’ Jill patted the bed beside her.

He turned to her. The pink-blue flicker made strange dark areas across her stomach, between her legs. He wanted more light so he could really see, to explore. He knew this wasn’t the body of his favorite adult actress. He’d know that body anywhere; that body never looked back at him, didn’t blush to avoid his gaze to make him feel dirty for looking.

‘What are you looking at?’ she giggled.

He closed his eyes to kiss her. As he stretched beside Jill he regretted that he wouldn’t be able to rewind to inspect and savour each moment of discovery.

As his passion was accepted, responded to, he wondered if his memory could ever be as crisp, as accurate in it’s replay, as those favorite video moments he was about to recreate for real.

map map to summer

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Do You Hear What I Hear

 How quickly do you get tired of festive music? Two minutes? Two days? Over the years I’ve built up a little collection of Christmas music that covers languages: Welsh, Russian, Swedish, French and even some Elvis. I dig them out once a year & give them their annual listenings.

lane02does it come in green

I do favour the campy/cheesy side of things with the Beach Boys, The Ventures; special favourites Booker T & The MG’s go hand in hand with Jimmy Smith. I even have one of my family’s Christmas lp’s: Eddie Fisher. I can’t say as I have an absolute favourite though. Brenda Lee’s Rocking ‘Round the Christmas Tree is pretty close to perfect though. Plus Silent Night sung by a choir of starving children on an ice flow (just kidding).

lane03lane way bargains

One thing I always enjoy is a A Christmas Carol beautifully read in complete – a free download – takes a couple of hours to listen to but it has spoiled me for any movie version. I have it burned to a cd along with Dylan Thomas reading A Child’s Christmas in Wales, plus the Million Dollar Man’s Christmas adventures, and (could it get any better?) Charles Laughton reading a Pickwick Christmas and (too much?) Ronald Coleman in a very abridged Christmas Carol.

lane01red daisies

Yeah I love Christmas but I’m always happy when its over.

 

samples

another piece out of the archives:

Circle

it’s hard to resist the notions of patterns

how the repeated gets repeated

the notion

that if you go back to the same bed

you leave in the morning

you have really gone nowhere

start to finish

at the same point

doesn’t equal progress

yet   for many that is progress

to maintain the same pattern

to have the comfort

of ending back where they started from

I do not resist the comfort and ease

of repetition

that gives structure

funny though

how much quicker and smaller these

rituals become

the older one becomes

the aching years and summers of youth

are the all too fast and brief

flash from one winter to the next

winters coming too close together

and summers never long enough

flowers come go  come go

and the gardening continues

when will the circle be broken

things are done

to keep that break from happening

the right foods for the heart

exercise  avoid the sun

drinking lots of water

a few less morsels at every meal

to cut down on the burden of the waist

each a little ritual

in hopes of avoiding the break

each

to add a few morsels of days

the gift of the moment

the miracle of breath

and joy of experiencing

what there remains to be experienced

days are numbered

but no one knows what those numbers are

we don’t know

what they are going to add up to

what will remain

is rarely equalled to

what we may have done

the mark made disappears with time

I decided not to worry about the mark made

but to enjoy what there is to enjoy

to create sustain without concern

leaving a legacy

is the least of my intent

a few memories will linger

till the last of those

who remember me

are gone

that is enough for me

another of the aging details

I sometimes forget

is about what may remain

who gets what

maybe I’ll give it all way

before the break

shedding is a good stage

to prepare me for the transition

into the next one

shed all that I wouldn’t want to move with

pretend my life

is to be reduced to a single room

what would I want to keep

make it that simple

and see what

loses its hold on me

what is really wanted

and what is there merely

because I have a place for it

those things that are pleasant enough

but which it

may be time to live without

to move on

to clear and clear

make more empty shelves

and leave them empty

invite the emptiness

into the present day

to prepare me for

what may be the void

when the circle is broken

ice01

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