Saturday, August 11, 2007

Get Well Joe:

Let's hope fusion keyboardist Joe Zawinul of Weather Report fame gets well. I didn't realize how old he was (75).

On a personal note, regarding jazz, like country, I tend not to like it served straight up, but as a fusion element mixed in with a strong dose of rock or blues. And that's why I like Weather Report. To me that's how all jazz ought to be played (but technically this music isn't really jazz but fusion).

Here is Weather Report's classic Birdland featuring the late great Jaco Pastorius on bass:

It's also my opinion that the Manhattan Transfer's cover of the tune is an un-godly abomination. Seriously though, they are one of those groups whom I don't like, but realize it's more a matter of taste on my part, not talent on theirs.

I remember talking to my classical guitar teacher (he was a great teacher, by the way) who also played jazz music about Lawrence Welk, and how he was the butt of many jokes. [The joke I remember is, what's the difference between a moose and Lawrence Welk's orchestra? With a moose, the horns are in the front, the asshole is in the back.]

He noted that Welk's style wasn't for him (he called it too "herky jerky,") but you have to give him respect as a musical perfectionist. In other words, just because you don't like the style of a particular music, don't therefore negatively judge its substance (on another note -- this guitar teacher did exactly this with rock music; but that's neither here nore there).

But anyway the bald-headed guy in the blue leisure suit is just too much for me. He does look a little like Dan Castellenetta, the voice of Homer Simpson, and about a third of the other characters.

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