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Location: Midwest, United States

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Music Returned

Late, late Saturday night, I absent-mindedly pulled Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue from the shelf. I slipped the CD into my player. It was not premeditated. It was simply something I felt the urge to a dark 2AM…

I skipped strait to “Blue in Green” and then “Flamenco Sketches.” My 75th Anniversary reissue includes an alternate take on “Flamenco Sketches.” I love this version best. I listened to the three cuts over and over again until morning. The music had returned, but it was a curious return. Then again, the whole “summer of silence” was exceedingly strange and discomfiting. I was relieved to find myself lost in music again. Still, I would have never guessed that the silence would be broken by jazz.

You see, I don’t listen to jazz all that often (quite rarely, actually). Jazz is the music of the metropolis...Manhattan...3AM. It is concrete, glass, velvet and smoke. It is the music of white linens, booze, women and heavily lidded eyes. It is music for a gritty urban realist, and I’m more of a pastoral daydreamer myself.

There are times, though, when jazz resonates within me. There have been nights when I found myself sitting in some nameless hotel bar...double scotch and cigarettes for company. It’s late. My throat is raw and my eyes are red. It doesn’t matter if the business of the day was a success or failure. There is only weariness and wistfulness. It is then, and only then, that I can truly hear and understand a Davis, Parker, Coltrane or Mingus. It’s a soundscape I don’t wish to explore all that often.

But there I the dark...feeling weary and wistful. Davis and Coltrane and company were playing for me.

The soundtrack to my life had resumed.

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