Thursday, February 7, 2013

Word of Mouth by Jaco Pastorius

Last night on my drive home, Jaco Pastorius' version of "Blackbird" showed up on my iPod. I don't remember downloading this album, and it might be something I either got myself at Patrick's request (for him to listen to on a roadtrip, maybe?) or something I read about, downloaded because I thought it might be cool, and then never listened to. I honestly don't know. Or maybe Patrick owned this album on CD and when I imported our CD collection, I included it then? Whatever, there it is, unlistened to (until now) on my iPod.

I must've been in exactly the right mood for Jaco's "Blackbird"because I listened to it about 4 times. It's not a straight cover, and whatever that sound is (glass breaking at random moments?), it really captured my imagination. "Captured my imagination" is a cliche of the highest degree, but what can I tell you, it's what actually happened.

Anyway, it took me a while to figure out the instrumentation - Toots Thielmans on harmonica kind of blew my mind. At first I thought it was a saxophone, or even a flute. My ear was playing tricks on me. And he's an amazing player. Now I'm listening to the whole album, and there's definitely some flute going on (in "Liberty," track 2), even though Wikipedia doesn't list it in the personnel. One of the sax players is surely covering. Maybe Tom Scott; he's the only one Wikipedia lists as even playing the flute. I know Wikipedia doesn't have everything right, it's just the quickest resource sometimes. I don't know enough about these guys to comment further. Whoever it is has a nice clear tone and it sounds like a fun part. Anybody with information on the flutist, please leave a comment!

When I got home, I quizzed Patrick about it, and he knew all about the song and that album, but he didn't know how it got on my iPod either. We turned on Apple TV and played it through my iTunes on the TV (so cool, this crazy technology), and then listened to a little more of the album. Jules liked it, it's good breastfeeding music.

Anyway, I'm no jazz expert and I like what I like (Charles Mingus, McCoy Tyner, a LITTLE Derek Bailey, Sun Ra in small doses...) and I don't like what I don't like without really being able to tell you why, but this grabbed me. Take a listen if you haven't already, maybe it'll grab you too.

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