Jazz with a focus on Traditional, Swing, and Straight-Ahead Jazz.
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Dec 8, 2016 10:00 PM (MT)
Host: Jerry Maddock
Show info posted by the Host: Tribute to Mose Allison ... more
Mose Allison, sometimes known as the Bard of Tippo, MI, passed away last month. He had earned the highest award a jazz musician can achieve, the title of NEA Jazz Master.
Allison was known not only for his particularly distinctive style of jazz/blues piano and vocals, but also for his uniquely wry and witty touch to songwriting, penning whimsical classics such as “Your Cash Ain’t Nothing But Trash,” “Your Mind Is on Vacation,” “Middle Class White Boy,” “I Love the Life I Live” and “Certified Senior Citizen.”
About his songwriting, he said, “I usually get an idea—a phrase or a punch line or something—then I sort of work it out in my head after that. I don’t even sit down at the piano and try to sing it before I get it all figured out in my head. I’ve lost a couple of tunes by not writing them down, so I started doing that.”
Pianist/singer and jazz radio personality Ben Sidran has been quoted as saying, “I first heard Mose in 1960 on the album The Transfiguration of Hiram Brown with the song “City Home,” which was about a young man in a small town dreaming of the big city and that was my story too. Then I went back and found the Prestige stuff, especially Creek Bank, with “If You Live” and “Seventh Son,” and I was on my way. Hearing his piano paying — simple, direct, swinging — and of course his vocals — cool, funky and so intelligent — opened a path for me and many others, including many growing up in Great Britain, like Georgie Fame and Van Morrison. Before I heard Mose, I had been listening to Horace Silver and Jon Hendricks but it never occurred to me that you could put it all together like he did: sing like a musician, write hip but plain spoken lyrics and groove like a blues man. There was never anyone else like Mose — he was a complete original, deceptively simple, like Monk. To me that’s part of his legacy: simple on the surface, many layers deep underneath. Years later, when I got to spend time with him producing his records for Blue Note, I found that it was not an attitude, it was a way of life. He never tried to be hip or anything other than who he was, which of course was the hippest thing in the world.”
Tonight's show will be liberally sprinkled with Mose Allison's recorded works.
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