Friday, June 05, 2009

Sara Lazarus - Taking a Chance on Love

I talked about Sara back on May 15th which apparently never made it to my blog . Thankfully it was short - so there's not too much to recap.

The song from that day was “Give Me the Simple Life”. In all this writing about jazz, it's becoming quite clear I'm a fan of Django Reinhardt. In this clip you can hear the Django Reinhardt's influence. The guitarist is Bireli Lagrene … and "Give Me the Simple Life" comes from the “Gipsy Project”. Apparently Bireli is quite the guitar and Django protégée winning the Gypsy music festival in Strasbourg at the age of TWELVE.

The song is an old Cole Porter tune maybe best known from Ella Fitzgeralds performance. I have a difficult time distinguishing between her, Diana Krall, and Jessica Molaskey (skip to 8:08).

Hear John’s (Pizzarelli) guitar? It’s got that Django sound too.

Sara popped up again today when I was listening to Bob Parlocha’s “Jazz with …” program. I like him because I learn so much about who’s playing, what their influences are, and the history of jazz. Plus he also does a lot to promote new jazz artists – which is nice for them – and me!

Today’s song Taking a Chance on Love (it’s a video) caught me with the lyrics. I'm always impressed that poets (which is what most lyrics are - at least to me) can pack so much into rhyming lines - and so cleverly.

Here I go again

I hear those trumpets blow again

All aglow again

Taking a chance on love

Here I slide again

About to take that ride again

Starry eyed again

Taking a chance on love

I thought that cards were a frame-up

I never would try

Now I'm taking that game up

And the ace of hearts is high

Things are mending now

I see a rainbow blending now

We'll have a happy ending now

Taking a chance on love

Here I slip again

About to take that trip again

I got that grip again

Taking a chance on love

Now I prove again

That I can make life move again

I'm in a groove again

Taking a chance on love

I walk around with a horseshoe

In clover I lie

And brother rabbit of course you

Better kiss your foot good-bye

On that ball again

I'm riding for a fall again

I'm gonna give my all again

Taking a chance on love

They are so well composed – the rhyme and emotion are so tight and succinct. Which I am always in admiration of … because me? Not so succinct. Didi? The KING of succinct sentences. These lyrics were composed by Vernon Duke, John Latouche, and Ted Fetter and this song was published in 1940. If you look on this Wiki list you’ll see this is another standard that has been recorded by “nearly everyone”.

And I’m not exaggerating there. Eddie Arnold, Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Judy Garland, Stan Kenton, and Mel Tormé are just a few names that caught my eye on that list.

Playing with her is guitarist Bireli Lagrene from the Gypsy Project – and Gilles Naturel on double bass. Bireli is a devote of … ? Can you guess?

Another reason these lyrics struck me, was a recent conversation with my mom about “falling in love” she said, "Well I figure when that kid spit/blew snot on your locker in 8th grade, that's when you wrote off falling in love."

I had NO IDEA what she was talking about. And still cannot bring a clear picture to mind about the incident. I thought it was interesting this incident made such a huge impression on her and is lost in the mists of time to me. It's also interesting to discover all this time she's pinned my "older men" lack of "no romantic life" on that event - which happened at such a fairly young age. I'm kind of glad she mentioned it - 'cause I get the sense she thought she should have done "something" about it (what? I don't know) but clearly it's been bothering her all these years. So there's one less concern she has to take to her grave - and that I don't have to unravel if she ever gets dementia.

It also makes me think about interviews of those who "know" someone well. It makes me wonder if what they the "close insiders" interpret to be the important events in a person's life, really were important. Do they really know what affected them and made them who they turned out to be? Are they right about the major influences in their life? Or are they really wrong, but there's no one to correct the misperception.

It also makes me wonder if that's not a device that could be used in a story.

SPEAKING OF STORIES … last night class was canceled because our teacher has laryngitis … which admittedly makes it hard to INSTRUCT! I was pretty pleased – as I didn’t have my assignment done. My house was all clean and picked up (dinner party preparations for Wednesday night). So! A whole night I could write. Yay!

Then I remembered there was an author, Alexandra Sokoloff, who was reading at Quail Ridge (my most favorite bookstore EVER) and since there was no class, I could go listen to her!

Or! There was another zucchini and pasta dish I wanted to cook. I could do that too!

But what did I really do? Went home, warmed up some red beans and rice – and then called it a night at 7:48 pm. When the sun was still up. I thought I might read in bed for a while – but that only lasted until 8:10pm. I woke up this morning at 5:45 am – and felt ready to tackle the day. Funny what a good night of sleep can do for a body, isn’t it?


G Liz said...

I'll take the jazz...forget the love...and look for some wine in the meantime!!! Love ya!

Kate Lord Brown said...

Hi! Oh I love that song :) Always write to jazz (the first book 'is' Miles Davis). Sometimes a good night's sleep is exactly what we need ...

MitMoi said...

G'Liz ... come on down! Jazz and wine are waiting for you. We'll drag Mamie over too!

Kate! Another reason to <3 you. Such great prompts AND you write to jazz.