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055: Miles Davis/Gil Evans, ‘Concierto de Aranjuez’ (“Sketches of Spain”)

In which a jazz recasting of classical favorite trumps the classical original. Gil Evans and a taste of heaven.

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19

087: Bob Dylan, ‘Black Diamond Bay’

Here’s a less-known Dylan masterpiece, ‘Black Diamond Bay’ from the last of his great albums, ‘Desire’ (1976).
It’s a cinematic tour de force, a dreamed narrative from a movie that you’ve never quite seen, hovering just beyond the horizon of your consciousness. You know every cliché, even the ones you’re aware Dylan is inventing as you watch.

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8

114: Luciana Souza, ‘Morrer de Amor’

‘Morrer de Amor’ as sung by Luciana Souza – the lyrics of this song are in a language I don’t understand, and I know almost nothing about its background. But the rendition is of such utter beauty and unspeakable perfection that its emotional eloquence transcends explication. I’m just going to turn off my analytical brain, close my verbose mouth, and hope that you’ll be as moved by it as I am.

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154: Laura Nyro, ‘Save the Country’

And yet again my city is being bombarded by Hamas missiles, half a dozen since last night. Thanks to the IDF’s Iron Dome for watching over me physically and to Laura for watching over me spiritually.

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8

050: The Rolling Stones, ‘Gimme Shelter’ (Kent State)

51 years ago, I walked onto my deserted campus and experienced a musical hallucination. That terrible time when American soldiers killed American citizens.

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051: The Ross Sisters, ‘Solid Potato Salad’

Don’t try this at home.

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005: Glenn Gould, Toccata in Cm (J.S. Bach)

Why do I so respect Glenn Gould? Because his playing is willful, extreme, eccentric. Because it’s utterly engaged.

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111: The Byrds (David Crosby), ‘Everybody’s Been Burned’

David Crosby’s best songs with The Byrds employed a psychedelic sensibility – floating, meandering, precious, delicate, shimmering, as unfettered and fragile as a soap bubble wafting in a marijuana cloud above a Tribal Gathering. ‘Everybody’s Been Burned’ is one of his finest. It has the weight of melody and lyric content and meaning and emotion and passion, and yet it still floats.

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