I did one really smart thing when I went to Pennsylvania.
I made a jazz playlist on an iPod shuffle for my dad.
Now straight jazz not cool jazz. Miles Davis, Bill Evans, Coleman Hawkins, Billie Holiday with a little blues from the likes of Muddy Waters.
Stuff we both love.
Dad adores it. I think it really helped him keep his spirits up before and after surgery, and even through the post-surgery depression.
Dad has been about jazz.
And I have grown up with jazz. From seeing Dizzy Gillespie as a toddler in Columbus, to hanging out and listening to jazz records. One of my favorite being Duke Ellington’s “Great Paris Concert.”
Listening to WBGO 88.3 Jazz FM out of Newark. The Temple University station that was all jazz, and now has classical too, which always annoyed dad. Jazz was always his music.
And it made me appreciate music of many genres.
When I look at my 10 most played songs on my ITunes, they are many different genres and styles.
Here they are as on today.
1. is a 3 way tie.
Rainbow Connection – The Muppets : A song that makes me think of the pagan gathering I go to every Memorial Day weekend in the Berkshires of Massachussets. “Have you been half asleep, or have you heard voices I’ve heard them calling my name…”
1. Lithium – Nirvana : I’m so happy because today I’ve found my friends, they’re in my head.
1. The Seed 2.0 – The Roots (with Cody ChestnuTT): I got to know Cody a little in LA and toyed working with him, but that’s another story.
4. Black Betty – Ram Jam : Just a great rock song .. ooh Betty Betty Ram a lam … and of course lots of solos. It is from the 70s after all.
5. Satisfied Mind – Johnny Cash : a song on Cash’s last album Ain’t No Grave that always makes me think of my father-in-law. Also one of my goals is strive for to live a more balanced life, and be satisfied with the life that I have.
6. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered – Ella Fitzgerald : Gorgeous, just gorgeous
6. (tie) Oh, Lady, Be Good – Ella Fitzgerald : Orchestral and beautiful.
Ella Fitzgerald was also the music for our wedding. And of course jazz.
8. 99 Luftballons – Nena : A song that makes me think of German class with Frau Williams in high school, and just great 80s pop. And this was a hit in German, so please don’t ever, ever play “99 Red Balloons on the radio.
9. South Side – Moby: Great electronica, rich and wonderful. Great hook too.
10. A Fool on the Hill (Take 4) – The Beatles: I think we all feel like a fool alone on the hill sometimes. I like being the fool, and the observer.
10. (tie) Kick It – Peaches & Iggy Pop – A song I found out from the wonderfully fun driving game Midnight Club 3: Dub Edition. Just fun. I’d never heard of Peaches before this song.
All very different, all songs that I love.
So music and jazz are in my soul. And my dad says his records are his when he passes, which I appreciate and hope isn’t for a long time to come.