Thursday, July 16, 2015

Cool jazz on a hot summer's night

Was anybody better than Billy Eckstine?

Several were as good but none better, I don't think. And this 1959 stereo version of Eckstine's 1958 Billy's Best album makes for fine listening on a hot, steamy Midwestern eve.
Hell, it would be just as wonderful on a frigid winter's night on the Plains, too. 

So this was tonight's musical selection here in the Revolution 21 studio here in Omaha, by God, Nebraska, deep into the dog days of summer, with state-fair season still a month away and college football a little further out than that.

UNLIKE many vinyl aficionados, I have nothing in particular against compact discs or good-quality digital audio files. But, damn, there's really nothing like putting an old LP on the turntable, basking in that particular smell of aged cardboard and paper. Nothing like holding the record sleeve in your hands and dreaming of your lost youth . . . or the days when jazz ruled the western world and you were yet a glimmer in your mama and daddy's eyes.

Maybe you can't hold this '50s classic of American popular music in your own two hands, but you can always listen to 3 Chords & the Truth and dream sweet dreams about a culture at its zenith that's just showing off.

Because it could.

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