Mike Jurkovic Poop 2019

PoOp 19: the decade falls

It was this handful of recordings that gratefully, again and again and again, pulled my attention away from binge watching the destruction of our cherished, yet all too vulnerable democracy.  They are mostly jazz recordings I know, but they made me feel like I had some connection to the music, unlike whatever it is that passes for popular music these days and makes me feel like a god-damned intruder w/three left feet, six bad ears and a penis for a nose from Ultra Gabba Hey Hey-17 fifteen gazillion light years away. Perhaps to my detriment an old crony and standby like Springsteen and his Western Stars was nice but after two or three listens, okay, so what? So, these are the recordings of 2019 that made it very evident that we all need to remain vigilant and engaged, or else great art and freedom to think free and range wide is the first to fall. And once that falls, all the rest follows.

Let’s get the stodgy old rocker out of the way first.

Buy Bob Dylan Travelin’ Thru The Bootleg Series Volume 15: 1967-1969 New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Bob Dylan Travelin’ Thru The Bootleg Series Volume 15: 1967-1969
Sure the John Wesley Harding out-takes and alternates won’t leave you guessing why thus version and not the versions that made the master, but the complete Johnny Cash/Dylan sessions, with some Earl Scruggs and Carl Perkins on board is a sure hoot n holla. Add the incredible 14 disc Rolling Thunder Revue 1975 Recordings and the year of the Bob is complete. Wish there was a soundboard of the New Haven November 15 ’75 show I was at, but well there is the audience boot I’ve had for so long.

Buy Chick Corea - Trilogy 2 New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Chick Corea – Trilogy 2
Along with Christian McBride and Brian Blade. Here’s hoping we needn’t wait another several years for a third installment.

Buy Branford Marsalis Quartet - The Secret Between The Shadow and the Soul New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Branford Marsalis Quartet – The Secret Between The Shadow and the Soul
Even if the disc only contained “Dance of The Evil Toys” and Keith Jarrett’s “The Windup” it will still be a end-of-the-year topper.

Buy David Torn - Sun of Goldfinger New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
David Torn – Sun of Goldfinger
Lower East side cacophony with drummer Ches Smith and alto Tim Berne. Sonically psychotic with a calm in the center that’s daring to hear.

Rent Lisa Hilton - Chalkboard Destiny New or Used via Amazon    Rent via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Lisa Hilton – Chalkboard Destiny
Known on both coasts, here’s the recording that will bring her into the fly-over states.

Buy Veronica Swift - Confessions New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Veronica Swift – Confessions
Brassy, sassy, full of break-out energy and more balls than Major League Baseball and any post emo/femo/wemo/urbo/rappo industro punko outfit you want to name, Swift fronts both the Emmet Cohen and Benny Green trios. Taylor Swift can kiss my ass.\

Buy Kris Davis - Diatom Ribbons New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Kris Davis – Diatom Ribbons
Aided and abetted by Esperanza Spalding, J.D. Allen, Ches Smith, Nels Cline, (yea him) Marc Ribot (yea him too),and Terri Lyne Carrington Davis takes herself and her beautifully twisted logic to daring new heights. Let’s see today’s rockers do that.

Buy Bria Skonberg - Nothing Never Happens New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
Bria Skonberg – Nothing Never Happens
Want to hear what it’s like when a woman really wants to rail against the encroaching darkness? Forget Billie Eilish and her aloof contraption and gadgetry. Trumpeter Skonberg’s discography has been a rather sunny one. ..until now. A wide, dark turn into the personal and national unrest that afflicts us all.

Buy Cannonball Adderley - Swingin’ In Seattle, Live at The Penthouse 1966-1967 New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    
Cannonball Adderley – Swingin’ In Seattle, Live at The Penthouse 1966-1967
Here’s a bootleg series for you. History in the making and swingin’ only partially defines it.

Buy John Coltrane - Blue World New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used via Amazon    Rent via iTunes [?]
John Coltrane – Blue World
Previously unheard music from he classic quartet in 1964 at peak creativity and stamina getting ready for Crescent and A Love Supreme.

Enrico Rava & Joe Lovano – Roma
From the glorious unravelling of “Fort Worth” through the shimmering statements within “Drum Song/Spiritual/\Over The Rainbow,” it’s hard to fathom this is these grizzled veterans of free form’s first duet recording.

Stephanie Richards – Take The Neon Lights
Fearless and forward thinking trumpeter Richards makes her instrument, its origins we can trace back to oh, 1500 BC, sound startling new and mysterious. Any rocker today doing that with his or her guitar?

Vijay Iyer & Craig Taborn – The Transitory Poems
Piano pioneer Cecil Taylor and the whole Art Ensemble of Chicago hovers mightily over these bold creators.

Erroll Garner – The Octave Remastered Series
Released on a monthly basis starting September, 2019, Garner fully, finally and faithfully gets his props as a master musician, orchestrator, and improvisor. Dreamstreet in particular is a stroke of genius.

Eric Dolphy – Musical Prophet: The Expanded 1963 New York Studio Sessions
Dolphy 1963. Months before he died way too early. What more need be said?

Paul Bley, Gary Peacock, Paul Motian – When Will The Blues Leave
A dance of inquisitive equals recorded in 1999. An outstanding performance.

Got to Broadway several times this year (those Wednesday matinees are cool when you’re retired) Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of The Temptations, To Kill and Mockingbird,Network, Gary, Tina: The Musical

Movies:
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, The Irishman, (Marty, Bob, Joe, and Al can all retire now at the top of their game) Jojo Rabbit (a weird fucker of a movie), Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice (finally!),. . . looking forward to Parasite, Pain and Glory, & 1917.

Read a whole bunch of books last year but it’s 2017’s Dark Money, by Jane Meyer that sticks in the memory banks.

If you can check out Calling All Poets every First Friday at Roost Studios & Art Gallery, 69 Main Street, New Paltz. Come listen to the best poets in the Hudson Valley. Check out my three hour, Tuesday night jazz free-for-all on Jazz Sanctuary 7-10pn WOOC 105.3FM Troy, NY or stream live at www.mediasanctuary.org

If you want to know the real mess we’re in, watch for my CD, AmericanMental due in the spring. Spoken word by yers trooly with guitar gymnastics by the wily Albany guitar master, Nick Bisanz.

Good luck everybody. November 2020 is just around the corner . . .

mj

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