Mar 052021

E Pluribus Gergely, your inability to appreciate side 1 of Television’s Marquee moon is as misguided as my inability to appreciate country music.

See what I mean? I took ownership of the TRUTH of one of my own shortcomings so that EPG can feel permission to look in the mirror and admit to the TRUTH of one of his own. Wait ’til you see how he responds to this I think his could be a healing exercise.

Here’s another example of how this can work:

Geo, your almost inexplicable, undying love for Jefferson Airplane’s After Bathing at Baxter’s is akin to my almost inexplicable, undying love for Roy Wood’s Boulders.

Share a reciprocal TRUTH with a fellow Townsperson in hopes of getting them to face a TRUTH of their own. Then, pass it on.


  15 Responses to “Reciprocal Truths”

  1. EPG’s contention that it’s impossible for a white guy to play the sax well, is akin to my belief that Al Green’s songs sound the same, and it’s kind of boring to begin with. Have we both arrived at a truth or are we victims of some bias our tastes can’t get past?

  2. cherguevara

    MIchael Brecker didn’t play the sax well?

  3. I know next to nothing about Michael Brecker. Nor will I be doing any research whatsoever to find out anything about him. What little I do know is based on a guilt by association thing. Sometimes I have to buy a whole collection of shitty smooth fusiony jazz, from someone with no taste, to get a few solid bop and abstract titles, which are always clean because they were chances that rarely made it to the turntable. Michael Brecker is always in those collections.

  4. hrrundivbakshi

    I felt like EPG opened up the door to some kind of meaningful colloquy when he admitted Prince had some passing value as a gateway “black music” drug for uptight white people. I suppose a gesture of similar passive-aggressive “open-mindedness” might be for me to say that the Mamas and the Papas were about more than just how hot Michelle Phillips was. Or maybe: say what you will about how corny Herman’s Hermits were, Peter Noone was a better-than-average entertainer, and a nice guy to boot. DEFINITELY better than Freddy & the Dreamers.

  5. Cher, when you have a minute or two, please post what you believe is a quintessential Michael Brecker performance.

  6. Hey, if Brecker was good enough for McCoy Tyner, he’s good enough for me.

  7. 2000 Man

    HVB, a difficult shit is better than Freddy and the dreamers.

  8. That’s the spirit, HVB!

    The rest of you who are getting as uptight over Michael Brecker as David Sanborn does over his greased ponytail are about to be sent to the penalty box. There is healing to be had.

  9. BigSteve

    Mr. Mod’s inability to appreciate side 2 of Television’s Marquee Moon is as misguided as my inability to appreciate side 1 of Abbey Road.

    Btw I did some research recently by watching Hitchcock’s Torn Curtain for the first time. The Television song is definitely better than that ‘spy thriller.’

  10. Ha, a Torn Curtain battle of the duds would be worth bringing back our polling function!

  11. BigSteve’s appreciation (tolerance) of “Torn Curtain” in the running order of Marquee Moon is akin to my appreciation (tolerance?) of “rejoyce” in the running order of After Bathing at Baxter’s.

    On a marginally related sidenote, I’ve always considered the Feelies Crazy Rhythms to be an immaculately produced album, sounding as if there was a lot of money spent which, given that it was on Stiff, seems unlikely. Also, while I like the Feelies, that album for me is head and shoulders above anything else they’ve done. Because of this, I looked up the listed Co-producer, Mark Abel. whose name I had only come across on as a guitarist on one song on the first Verlaine solo album. I expected him to be some sort of obscure but experienced New York studio guy. Improbably enough, he’s a modern classical composer who dabbled in rock before launching his long term career.

    To tie this all back, in 2017 had written an on-line essay titled “Grace Slick, Art Song Pioneer,” which specifically examines “rejoyce.” Since I know this is fascinating to everybody, here’s the link:

  12. I will follow thank link, geo. Too much rock need good faith went into arriving there!

  13. I’ve gotta admit that the link was more in jest than not. However, I will say that the urge to follow an obscure link is not completely alien to me. I went to bad way to late one night this week because I bumped into a reference to a lengthy Mary McCarthy review of Nabokov’s “Pale Fire,” and was compelled to spend another hour or so reading it at 1:00 AM.

    The Mark Abel history was very interesting Maybe I’m giving him too much credit, but I definitely think something is going on with that album.

  14. cherguevara

    Back when I was a “broke as a joke” college student, I was approached on the street by a panhandler. He held out his hand, started to speak, then suddenly deflated, put his hand down and turned away in defeat, saying, “I know you don’t have any money.” That’s a bit how I feel defending Michael Brecker, I don’t see the point in continuing given that my favorite examples of his playing do fall into the “modern jazz” category and I don’t think anything I posted will convince EPG that Brecker is a white guy who can actually play the saxophone.

    There are plenty of jazz/fusion players who I feel can be great or corny, depending on their context. Sanborn is one of them – I’m not a big fan of his solo records, but I sure love that Bowie live at the Tower album, and Sanborn is killing on that. Violinist, Mark O’Connor is another – I love to hear him just rip, but when it comes to his compositions, I’m not as much of a fan. Brecker is a similar character, though honestly, I am more of a fan of his solo albums and jazz sideman gigs than his playing with pop musicians – mostly because of the people he played with. I don’t like Dire Straits, so his solo on “Your latest trick” is not familiar to me. Same with his work with James Taylor. But ok, sure, here are a few examples:

    Do you like 80’s pop? Cameo – Candy:

    Joni Mitchell – Dry Cleaner from Des Moines:

    Paul Simon – Still Crazy After All These Years – Here’s a live version:

    I prefer to hear him playing more trad jazz, like this:

    Here he lets loose on a Chaka Khan number, which is more jazzy than her norm, based on Night in Tunisia:

    Back in my teen years, I was around more jazz muso types and they were heavy into Brecker’s first solo album as a bandleader:

    I know he played on a bunch of Parliament/Funkadelic stuff, but I don’t know much of that music.

    Now, I don’t know the exact criteria for “playing well.” There’s technique, and feel, and there’s two kinds of taste – the player’s, and the listener’s. Go ahead and tell me you don’t dig any of this stuff, but don’t tell me he couldn’t play!

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