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Catamount Community Radio - March 11, 2012

While riding my bike to the office yesterday I saw two crows seemingly having a dogfight. Well, it would more properly be a bird fight, but anyway, they were tangling. I've seen crows and mocking birds go at it many times ... but two crows? That was a first. Then I saw two young people having a picnic in the sunshine. When is the last time I had a picnic? I'm overdue, I'll tell you that. Thinking about it, if you're out of sorts, it would be a good way to encourage that happiness to come back. Have a picnic.

I bracketed the show with Scott Joplin's "Solace," from the soundtrack of "The Sting." Vaguely, I can remember when that movie came out ... It generated a sort of mini Joplin craze. I remember my grandma, a formidable piano player, playing "Maple Leaf Rag" and "The Entertainer." I found sheet music for solace and have started working on it on the piano; this explains why I played it today.

We heard a pair from Wynton, including "Sunflowers," which is in 5/4 time. Those guys swing 5/4 pretty good.

Barney Bigard did "Coquette." In the thirties, subsets of the Ellington Orchestra would record small group sessions under different names (Cootie Williams, Rex Stewart, Barney Bigard, etc). So even though I have no liner notes to work with, I'm assuming that the Duke is on the piano and the rest of the guys on this recording are Ellington cats. I read Bigard's autobiography some years ago. The one passage I remember vividly:

"I remember the weird chords that would come in behind us. I wasn't used to that kind of chording at all, but the more I played with them, the more accustomed my ear got to it all. I used to go up to Duke in the intermission and say, 'Those chords behind me on such-and-such a number: they just don't sound right to me.' He would sit right down and show me what he was doing. He'd break all the principles of arranging too. He'd give a guy different notes to what he should have had for his instrument. That was what he called 'jungle music.'"

Howlin' Wolf explained how he got his name, then we listened to him do "I Had a Dream." I really enjoyed listening to his accent: Chicago via Mississippi.

Harry Connick, Jr. did Sidney Bechet's "Petite Fleur," a wonderful melody. He did a big-band arrangement, with the bari sax taking the lead. ¡Viva the bari sax!

Tom Waits sang "Alice" and I couldn't resist following it up with Alice Cooper. Waits' song includes "Arithmetic, arithmetoc ..." So I riffed: "Arithmetic, arithetoc, March 11 you change your clock." Ain't I clever? Puzzles tremble at the sound of my name.

There was a lot of other good stuff, but to avoid being prolix, I'll cut it off.

Catamount Community Radio, Sunday mornings 10-12 (eastern coastal) on WWCU-FM.

1. Marvin Hamlisch – Solace
2. Oscar Peterson & Stan Getz – I Want to Be Happy
3. Cuba L.A. – Siboney
4. Wynton Marsalis – Root Groove
5. Nobukazu Takemura – Fallslake
6. Barney Bigard – Coquette
7. Frank Sinatra – Cycles
8. Howlin’ Wolf – Howlin’ Wolf Talks
9. Howlin’ Wolf – I Had a Dream
10. Tom Waits – Alice
11. Alice Cooper – I’m the Coolest
12. Nick Lowe – Poisoned Rose
13. Joe Venuti & Zoot Sims – I’ll See You in my Dreams
14. Wynton Marsalis – Sunflowers
15. Metropole Orchestra – Secret Agent
16. Jackie Wilson – Lonely Teardrops
17. Billie Holliday – Some Other Spring
18. Harry Connick, Jr. – Petite Fleur
19. Bill Evans – Woody ‘n’ You
20. Fats Waller – Spring Cleaning
21. Jack Bongo Burger – Jordu
22. Pearl Bailey & Hot Lips Page – The Hucklebuck
23. The Punch Brothers – No Concern of Yours
24. Abdullah Ibrahim – In a Sentimental Mood
25. Charles Mingus – Goodbye Porkpie Hat
26. Steve Earle – Rich Man’s War
27. Sex Mob – Sign ‘o’ the Times
28. Marvin Hamlisch – Solace

Howlin' Wolf

Wynton Marsalis


You are the Coolest,

That's ever come around.
I notice things get Hotter,
Whenever you're in town!

Re: You are the Coolest,

"And all I have to do is act naturally"

October 2019



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