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142: Kat Edmonson, ‘Champagne’

It’s disconcerting when a 28-year old writes Cole Porter songs, or when her cover of a Lennon song outshines the original. Come meet Kat Edmonson, who’s been monopolizing my turntable for the past month.

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3

134: Lee Konitz, ‘Duende’

“Duende” in Spanish denotes both an evil little goblin and ‘a certain diabolical magic’which Lorca called “a sort of corkscrew that can get art into the sensibility of an audience.” The Lee Konitz ‘Duende’ (written for him by Chick Corea) has remained an obscure bluenote in a legendary career. But it wrenched my heart the first time I heard it, and has done so every time since.

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0

The Reality of Death and Love

For thirty years, my mother, Claire Mitchel, wrote a widely-read weekly column for the Miami Herald on the life style of senior citizens. She didn’t miss a single week. The week my father died,  she said she didn’t feel like writing. I said I felt I had something to say, so I guested, writing this […]

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SoTW Index

Here’s a complete chronological list of all published SoTWs for your browsing convenience. Please do feel free to sign up for email notifications of new postings. Mint Juleps, ‘Don’t Let Your Heart‘ Buddy Holly, ‘Learning the Game‘ (undubbed) Jerry Garcia & Dave Grisman, ‘So What?‘ The Beach Boys, ‘Kiss Me Baby‘ JS Bach, ‘Toccata in […]

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124: Bill Evans, ‘Nardis’

In 1980, Bill Evans knew he was dying from his life-long drug habit. In a harrowing burst of creative energy, he raged against ‘the dying of the light’ night after night in these relentless, probing, solo piano introductions to ‘Nardis’.

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123: Ray Stevens, ‘Jeremiah Peabody’s (…) Pills’

I ain’t no hyprachondriact, but I was up all night with acrobatic kishkes. So here comes the universal cure: Ray Stevens’ ‘Jeremiah Peabody’s Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolvin’ Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills’.

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4

118: Brian Wilson, ‘Surf’s Up’ (“SMiLE”)

The Beach Boy’s unreleased 1966 “SMiLE” was rumored to be Brian Wilson’s unfinished masterpiece. Its legend grew larger than the Loch Ness monster, more beautiful than Shangri-La, more elusive than the Yeti, richer than El Dorado, more profound than the Shroud of Turin, more holy than the Grail. Now it’s been reassembled and issued, 37 years later. Was it worth the wait?

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108: Michael McDonald/Luciana Souza, ‘I Can Let Go Now’

Here’s another pair of sublime/shlock treatments of a heartwrenching/heartburning ballad. I’m far too snobbish to admit that I swoon over both –’I Can Let Go Now’ by both its writer, light-heavyweight Michael McDonald, and by the regal Luciana Souza.

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