Thursday, March 01, 2007

Fire, by who?

In the past I have posted on Anjani and Madeleine Peyroux, who have recorded wonderful jazz interpretations of Leonard Cohen and, in Peyroux's case, other singer-songwriters: Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, and others. Likewise, Cassandra Wilson has jazzified rock musicians from Neil Young to U2. And, decades ago, Ella Fitzgerald recorded The Beatles.

It seems regrettable to me that the original artists did not directly experiment with jazz forms. Joni Mitchell was an exception: she went through a jazz phase in the late 1970s, recording with Jaco Pastorius, Pat Metheny, Michael Brecker, and others. More jazz-rock than jazz, but still. When it works, it's brilliant.

Cohen, on the other hand, avoided jazz, and liked to police his musicians against jazz intrusions... or did he?

Here's an astounding video of Cohen and Sonny Rollins playing "Who by fire" (spotted on HuffPo). It made my day. I wonder if more such exist.

Update: fixed jazz police link


Tabula Rasa said...

very nice. not your typical jazz rhythm backing by any means, but the man's genius shines right through. i really liked how everyone stood and clapped for him at the end.

km said...

Well, let's not forget that most pop/rock musicians HATED jazz. Pop was everything jazz wasn't - fast, dirty and over in 2"30'.

Personally, I can't wait for the 23rd Century by when these genre labels and distinctions will be forgotten.

And so on to my Cryogenic Chamber....