Jazz

The Importance of Wearing Hats

Just when you thought the neighborhood had lost all its character, you meet an elderly gentleman wearing a psychedelic Muhammad Ali t-shirt and a captain’s hat. We struck up a conversation about the importance of having many hats, how picking a certain hat helps set the tone and mood for the day. He has 4 fedoras (his favorite from France, bought in Paris, 1957, for $30), six cowboy hats, three captains hats (a white one with gold trim for when he vacations in Long Island), two sombreros, a variety of scally and skull caps, and many, many others. In total 74.

Not sure about the lesson here, but I wish some people shut the fuck up about nonsense, and paid more attention to what hat they’re wearing. It might just make us all a little bit more interesting.

4 examples of hats on jazz legends.

The Noir Template: One Mistake

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In Noir, it’s the eyes that give it all away. Here in Detour (1945), that faraway look of protagonist Al Roberts shows that something bad has happened, and something even worse waits on the horizon.

All it takes is one mistake.

Detour is one of the greatest fatalistic Noirs, a sublime, gritty cheapie that holds no punches. Go watch it.

A Noir Triptych: Jazz for the Genre

Elements of Noir maneuver through territories of the desperate, the melancholic, the heartbreaking and the violent. Here’s a trio of jazz mixes I made that touch the nerve and bring a soundtrack to the gritty, existential pulp — a focus here, at least in a pictorial sense, of elegant, yet damaged goods. (click on the images and give a listen)

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Gracy Kelly, Elements of Noir, Spoonhead, 8tracks

 

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dolores del rio, someone to watch over, spoonhead, 8tracks

 

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joan crawford, somewhere in the night, spoonhead, 8tracks

Farewell, Smokes

iKSI1TZjvX0kI will not be tempted to light one up after watching some French New Wave.

listal-5I will resist the urge when watching a dark stranger light up a femme fatale’s cigarette in a classic Noir film.james-moody-nyc-1951I will listen to jazz music sans the smoke. Timmons and Trane, Blakely and Byrd – they’ll still sound the same to me.

Paul NEWMAN, Portrait mit Zigarette 1960We sure had plenty of good times together, and our fair share of bad ones. I’ll miss you in the morning with coffee, or filling those idle moments during a long afternoon. And especially at night, outside the pub, you and I keeping each other company.

Goodbye old friends.