johnblitweiler

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Everything posted by johnblitweiler

  1. Now reading...

    Back in the day I too read all of his books ... not sure I would enjoy them as much now. Anyway one book about him that is definitely worth reading is "The Letters of Evelyn War" edited by Mark Amory. It shows him as funny (particulary in his letters to Nancy Mitford) witty and suprisingly kind when writing to his family. Used copies probably going cheap on Amazon...... Be sure to read "The Loved One" even though it's later Waugh.
  2. Cecil Taylor conned out of 1/2 millon prize

    I bet ya Wynton Marsalis will pay for the swine's defense. Remember how Wynton rewarded the guy who sued the 2009 Siguenza jazz festival in Spain?
  3. Farewell Robin Williams

    Didn't he play Estragon in a NY production of Waiting For Godot?
  4. Name Three People...

    Prunella Scales Alicia Keyes Franchot Tone
  5. Austin Mitchell & Clarence "Sleepy" Anderson

    Clarence "Sleepy" Anderson played in Chicago over 50 years ago. He's in Larry's book.
  6. RIP Jean Jacques Avenel

    Yes.
  7. The purpose of the "jazz is America's classical music" hustle, as David Baker pointed out 40 years ago, is to get our hands on some of that grant $ that has been going to symphonies, operas, classical-music schools, such. Nothing wrong with that in principle -- it's terrible that some great artists struggled (or were even down and out) for years, decades. That previous sentence includes many of my favorite bop-era Blue Note, Prestige, Savoy, Riverside, etc. artists. Nowadays it's great that some other great artists get enough $ to be financially secure for the rest of their lives, and only need to create. What's wrong with "jazz is America's classical music" is overkill -- Larry is so right, these satirists are spitting out mommy's mouthfuls. Of course jazz and classical music are two separate traditions, each with its own unique integrity. Some of the classical music I hear on the radio is utter garbage, I seldom hear jazz that stoops so low.
  8. Name Three People...

    Bent Rosengren George Strait Curly
  9. Top 5 all time favorites

    Dvorak - New World Symphony - Horenstein (Chuck also led me to Horenstein) Debussy - Preludes, Sonatas, Images, Nocturnes, and and and Bartok - 3d Piano Concerto Sibelius - Tapiola Bach - Wachet Auf cantata Shostakovich - 5th, 10th symphonies and more by most of those guys, plus other composers. Subject to change. Plus, how did we live before Youtube?
  10. His 9.00 ERA makes him one of our best relief pitchers this season.
  11. Name Three People...

    Dick Tracy Get Smart Agent K9
  12. Name Three People...

    Valerie Ponomarev Valerie Capers Valentine Wannop
  13. Now reading...

    Interesting that Spark's male characters are almost invariably crooks or nebbishes, and the most characterless of her males are the ones her protagonists fall in love with. Apparently one of her lovers became the pisseur de copie of a novel, but did she ever put her psychotic husband in a book? The Mandelbaum Gate is the closest (of the 13 or 14 Sparks that I've read) she's come to Ford Madox Ford, with its time shifts, characters with amnesia, and sentences like, "She was afraid he was going to say more about blood and bloodshed; this was so often his fear since his lapse of memory -- 'I feel there's going to be bloodshed. I wonder if Miss Vaughan...'" I mean later-day Ford, post-Parades End novels. Of course even in The Mandelbaum Gate her sense of humor is more active, and crueler than his whimsies. It looks like I like Spark for some of the reasons that bug ejp. Just read the first novel in Daniel Woodrell's The Bayou Trilogy. Disappointing. I wonder if Woodrell is a James Lee Burke in reverse. Burke, when young, wrote some strong novels including one about eastern KY guys a lot like some KY guys I knew 55 or so years ago. But then Burke invented his detective character Robichaux, purely a fantasy, and despite the LA local color his detective novels are annoyingly unbelievable. This Woodrell novel, Under The Bright Lights, has a detective hero and the ongoing conflicts are awfully forced -- little dynamic change. He wrote it years before he wrote Winter's Bone. Did Woodrell get better over time?
  14. Billy Root

    My memory from 1958 or 59 is that your Dad was a very good baritone player, with a big sound.
  15. New Pops on the way

    AAGH! My 2nd-hand Sony CD player just ate up disk 7, the one with Leonard Bernstein and alternate takes.
  16. Name Three People...

    Lonesome Dragon Lonely Woman Eleanor Rigby
  17. Art Pepper with Duke Jordan - Live in Copenhagen

    I have had a 2 CD set of this material for quite a few years. I very much enjoyed hearing Art play with a legendary pianist that had never previously recorded with Pepper. Yes, something about playing with Jordan especially inspired Art Pepper that night.
  18. Billie Holiday 1937

    And who was the fiance?
  19. The Hal Russell Story - Live!

    Michael Shannon sounded like Hal and used a megaphone like Hal did, but I wish Kent Kessler's hilarious impression of Hal could have been heard. Everyone sounded great and it was the most fun I've had at a concert since the last NRG Ensemble Hal-oween concert I heard. Surely Hal was smiling down from heaven.
  20. I smiled. It looks like a mockery of the kind of interviews I and other jazz crix did down through the years. Besides I enjoy juvenile abusive humor.
  21. Name Three People...

    Richard Diamond Martin Kane Mr. Keen
  22. Name Three People...

    Ted Nash Cadillac Bob (a Chicgo jazz-club owner) Ford Madox Ford
  23. Tom Rainey Trio July 18th NYC

    Laubrock and Rainey are certainly sympathetic players and she is quite smart and versatile. Should be a good show.