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Catamount Community Radio Radio - November 28, 2010

I've been enjoying my time off, playing the saxophone, sleeping late, failing at making alioli, drinking wine, reading Uruguayan short stories, and taking care of pending work at a snail's pace.

I felt good this morning, and the show went pretty smoothly. I didn't have any preconceived themes, but a couple emerged organically.

I played covers of my two favorite Chuck Berry songs: "Brown Eyed Handsome Man," and "Memphis, Tennessee." We heard Nina Simone do the former (even though my favorite version is by Fontella Bass). Al Green sang the other one. The genius of "Memphis, Tennessee" is that throughout the song we think the singer wants the operator to help him get in touch with his lover, and only at the end do we realize that he is talking about his six-year-old daughter.

The other themes that popped up were Uruguayan music and solitude. We heard a "candombé" tune from 1968, Alfredo Zitarrosa's "Doña Soledad." When I was in Argentina back in 2001 I bought a Candombé anthology which includes the tune.

Alfredo Zitarrosa

According to a site I found on the interweb: "Candombé is a drum-based musical form of Uruguay. Candombé originated among the Afro-Uruguayan population of Montevideo and is based on Bantu African drumming with some European influences and touches of the tango." That sounds about right.

We also heard Jorge Drexler do "Soledad." Just for the record, "soledad" in Spanish means "solitude," but it is also a woman's name.

I finished the show with Allen Toussaint and Marc Ribot doing Ellington's "Solitude."

I probably played the Uruguayan music after having read the short stories, especially Juan Carlos Onetti's "Bienvenido, Bob," which struck a chord with me, and it wasn't D-minor.

Two from Steven Bernstein, "Pennies from Heaven," from the Millennial Territory Orchestra album. I saw this band on New Years Eve several years ago, and when, during the break, I told the singer I had just bought the tune on itunes, she laughed at me.

Don't you know each cloud contains
Pennies from heaven.
You'll find yor fortune falling
All over town.
Be sure that your umbrella is upside down.
Trade them for a package of sunshine and flowers.
If you want the things you love
You must have showers.
So when you hear it thunder
Don't run under a tree.
There'll be pennies from heaven for you and me

I also played "Mazinka" from the "Diaspora Soul album." Says SB: "..the chair dance played at Ashkenazi weddings. The breaks are inspired by 'Big Chief' as recorded by the Wild Tchoupitoulas."

Steven Bernstein

Catamount Community Radio, where I stifle the electric guitars and let the saxophones take over. Sunday mornings, 10-12 (EST) on Power 90.5.

1. Cannonball Adderley – Stars Fell on Alabama
2. Allen Toussaint – Just a Closer Walk With Thee
3. James P. Johnson – If I Could Be With You (One Hour Tonight)
4. Benny Goodman – I Found a New Baby
5. Cassandra Wilson – Watch the Sunrise
6. John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman – Lush Life
7. Bob Wills & the Texas Playboys – Twin Guitar Special
8. Spearhead – Red Beans and Rice
9. Nina Simone – Brown Eyed Handsome Man
10. Al Green – Memphis, Tennessee
11. Tommy Dorsey – Opus One
12. Jimi Hendrix – Born Under a Bad Sign (fragment)
13. Aníbal Troilo – Inspiración
14. Steven Bernstein’s Millennial Territory Orchestra – Pennies from Heaven
15. Shirley Horn – Love for Sale
16. Etta James – I’d Rather Go Blind
17. Steven Bernstein – Mazinka
18. Mulatu Astatke – Chinese New Year
19. Barney Kessel – String of Pearls
20. Babyface – Simple Days
21. Sonny Rollins – Just in Time
22. Marisa Monte – Segue o seco
23. Kool Keith – Celestial
24. Dizzy Gillespie – Manteca
25. Alfredo Zitarrosa – Doña Soledad
26. A Tribe Called Quest – Check the Rhime
27. Jorge Drexler – Soledad
28. Allen Toussaint – Solitude

Allen Toussaint



February 2019



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