William Parker’s In Order To Survive (WP, bass; Hamid Drake, drums, MCOTD Hall of Fame; Cooper-Moore, piano, vocals; Lewis Barnes, trumpet; Rob Brown, alto saxophone), “Hymn,” live, New York, 2013
He isn’t doing that right—that was a very important one. It was what Astaire claimed he was thinking whenever he watched himself onscreen, and I noted that third-person pronoun. This is what I understood by it: that for Astaire the person in the film was not especially connected with him. And I took this to heart, or rather, it echoed a feeling I already had, mainly that it was important to treat oneself as a kind of stranger, to remain unattached and unprejudiced in your own case. I thought you needed to think like that to achieve anything in this world. Yes, I thought that was a very elegant attitude.
—Zadie Smith, Swing Time
MCOTD Hall of Fame
William Parker’s In Order To Survive (WP, bass, composition; Hamid Drake, drums, MCOTD Hall of Fame;* Lewis Barnes, trumpet; Rob Brown, alto saxophone; Cooper-Moore, piano), “Criminals in the White House,” live, New York, 2013
Today—his birthday—it’s all Ornette Coleman all day on WKCR-FM (Columbia University).
*With saxophonists Von Freeman and Henry Threadgill; trumpeter Lester Bowie; gospel singer Dorothy Love Coates; composer Morton Feldman; poets John Berryman, William Bronk, and Wislawa Szymborska; and photographer Helen Levitt.
sounds of New York
As funky as it is abstract, as abstract as it is funky—like life itself.
Farmers by Nature (Craig Taborn, piano; William Parker, bass; Gerald Cleaver, drums), live, Paris, 2011
art beat: other day, Whitney Museum of American Art (New York)
Stuart Davis (1892-1964), Landscape with Garage Lights, 1931-32 (Stuart Davis: In Full Swing, through 9/25/16)
Hamiet Bluiett (baritone saxophone, clarinet, flute, voice), William Parker (bass, doson gouni, shakuhachi), Hamid Drake (drums, voice), live, New York, 2016
Three bowls of stew
and you feel
rich after all
—Yosa Buson (1716-1783), translated from Japanese by W.S. Merwin and Takako Lento
sounds of New York
Some of the most kinetic, exciting, enlivening sounds I’ve heard in a while.
Farmers by Nature (Craig Taborn, piano; William Parker, bass; Gerald Cleaver, drums), live, New York, 4/4/16
art beat: yesterday at the Art Institute of Chicago
Martin Puryear, Maquette for Bearing Witness (1994) (Multiple Dimensions, through May 1st)
like nobody else
Cecil Taylor Unit (CT, piano, vocal, percussion; Jimmy Lyons, alto saxophone, percussion; William Parker, bass, percussion; Rashid Bakr, percussion; Andre Martinez, percussion; Brenda Bakr, vocal) with dancers (Doretha Davidson, Leon Brown, Ron McKay, Pauline Zaguhei), live, Germany (Berlin), 1983
Milford Graves (drums, vocals) with Amiri Baraka (words), Roswell Rudd (trombone), Charles Gayle (tenor saxophone, piano), William Parker (bass), live, New York, 2013
As you get older, you ain’t afraid to say something.
art beat: yesterday, Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago)
Douglas Ewart, George Lewis, Douglas Repetto, Rio Negro II, 2015 (The Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now [through Sunday])