music clip of the day


Month: January, 2015

Wednesday, January 21st

Open Minds: Chris Potter Underground (with CP, tenor saxophone, bass clarinet; Craig Taborn, keyboards; Adam Rogers, guitar; Nate Smith, drums), 2012

Music documentaries can go wrong in so many ways. Too much talk. Talk that reminds you, repeatedly, why musicians aren’t paid to speak. Mediocre sound. This one, which I bumped into yesterday, seems to avoid them all.

Tuesday, January 20th

Need a jolt?

Brandon Lopez (bass), Tyshawn Sorey (drums), Chris Pitsiokos (alto saxophone), live, New York, 11/10/14

Talk about range. The piece we heard Saturday—the one with flute, violin, bass clarinet, and piano? It was composed by the drummer.

Monday, January 19th

He didn’t just speak—he sang.

Martin Luther King Jr., “I Have a Dream” (excerpt)
Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963


Interview with MLK adviser and speechwriter Clarence B. Jones, 2013

Sunday, January 18th

more of Archie B.

Five Blind Boys of Mississippi (feat. Archie Brownlee [1925-1960], lead vocals)

“Will My Jesus Be Waiting,” 1952


“Where There’s a Will,” 1958


“That Awful Hour,” 1960


“Take Your Burdens to Jesus,” 1959



reading table

Life shoots you a lethal dose of time. Time is a drug that wears off.

—Samantha Harvey, Dear Thief

Saturday, January 17th

If your appetite for new music is insatiable, what better time to be alive?

Tyshawn Sorey (1980-), Quartet for Butch Morris (2012); International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), featuring Erik Carlson (violin); Joshua Rubin (bass clarinet), Eric Lamb (flute), Cory Smythe (piano); live, New York, 2012

Six decades of listening and, until yesterday, I’d never heard this particular combination of instruments. You?



art beat: yesterday at the Art Institute of Chicago

James Ensor (1860-1949), Rooftops of Ostend, 1884 (Temptation: The Demons of James Ensor, through January 25th)



reading table

Nature, the sky above us, is conducting no mean politics when it presents beauty to all, without discrimination, and nothing old and defective, but fresh and most tasty.

—Robert Walser (1878-1956), “Snowdrops,” excerpt (translated from German by Tom Whalen and Trudi Anderegg)

Friday, January 16th

How many of today’s songs will people want to hear in 2078?

Hank Williams (1923-1953), live (TV show), 1952

“Cold, Cold Heart”


“I Can’t Help It If I’m Still in Love with You” (with Anita Carter)

Thursday, January 15th

basement jukebox

Kitty Wells (1919-2012), “Will Your Lawyer Talk to God” (H. Howard), 1962


Wednesday, January 14th

sounds of Chicago (day two)

Sometimes encountering a new piece of music can turn your whole day around, which is what happened to me the other day when I bumped into this.

Georg Friedrich Haas (1953-), In Vain (2000)
Ensemble Dal Niente, live, Chicago, 2013



art beat: yesterday at the Art Institute of Chicago

Claude Monet (1840-1926), Cliff Walk at Pourville (1882)



Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), Seascape (1879)



random thoughts

Eyes taste paintings no less than mouths taste food.

Tuesday, January 13th

sounds of Chicago (day one)

Art Ensemble of Chicago (Roscoe Mitchell, reeds; MCOTD Hall-of-Famer Lester Bowie [1941-1999], trumpet; Malachi Favors [1927-2004], bass; Don Moye, drums), live, Hungary (Budapest), 1995


Monday, January 12th

from my desert-island list

No matter how many times I hear it, this recording, made over 80 years ago, never fails to sweep me away.

Frederic Chopin (1810-1849), Preludes, Op. 28
Alfred Cortot (1877-1962), piano, 1933

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