Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah - etc :)

Hope you all have blessed and happy holidays! I'm in admiration of it's speed, this year. I try to find ways to savor the moments but my body still wants sleeeeep... Last night I discovered a bonus disc to season 5 of the X-Files I'd never watched. That kept me awake til 2am - a rarity these days! But enough of that...

If you ever step outside the realm of jazz into electronic music, allow me to introduce you to what kept me busy in off-hours the last month and a half: an electro-funk version of "Fum Fum Fum". Click the little green guy to play. It's a free download if you dig it - just click that little arrow above the waveform.

If you like your beats a little more downtempo, here's a new video I made for an older recording. These videos are usually a low-tech affair; but good for zoning out to while you listen. "O Little Town of Bethlehem" is a bit more jazzy, with a complete (albeit simple) re-harmonization and lots of major 9 chords.

Another thing that's kept me occupied is the major undertaking of converting a ton-load of my Dad's vinyl muzak albums to digital [a well-meant Christmas present; rife with fond-ish childhood memories of album art and intriguing musical moments, that is nonetheless taking it's toll on my sanity]. Gone are the days of Easy-Listening record sales, cornball album covers with hotties in time-capsule apparel, and boasts on album covers about sound quality and "2 albums on 1" platters, as shown below. (The "hour of music" claim is an outright lie, however lol).

When crate-digging, I'm prone to picking up releases like the one below. I get a kick out of the design, and my Dad gets 40 more minutes of musical ether.. There's a Pink Floyd joke in this one somewhere, but I'm gonna save it for my FB wall. (In Dad's defense, he's also big on big-band, and the older, lighter side of jazz.)

The topic of vibraphonist Jack Brokensha came up in my interview with Sid Blair. One thing led to another and I discovered this Christmas album by his quartet, with Bess Bonnier on piano, Paul Keller on bass and Jim Ryan on drums. At the risk of getting arrested - here is some Detroit jazz holiday music to dig - posted below the artwork. It's out of print, I believe, but I'll also post a link to Amazon for used copies - it makes a nice change in your Christmas music arsenal, including a real nice bass melody from Keller on "Let It Snow..." There is also a Hanukkah track!

And finally - if you are a "Keep Christ in Christmas" kind of person - John Pellegrino and I are the jazz rhythm section on "O Christmas Tree", over at Christmas Music Reborn - a project that features various artists and secular holiday songs with new Christian lyrics by Mike Ronci.

The trio will be back at Jazzland in Jacksonville on the 28th of January - looking forward. In the meantime - Peace, Love & Happy Holidays!! - Kenny

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