WTF

WTF (Where They From)

Featuring: Pharrell Williams

Atlantic Records

© 2015 Missy Elliott

Video direction: Dave Meyers & Missy Elliott

Production: Knoko Films

Happy

Columbia Records

© 2013-2014 Pharrell Williams

http://www.missy-elliott.com/wtf

http://pharrellwilliams.com/

http://davemeyers.com/

https://www.instagram.com/dave_meyers/

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Missy Elliott is Back!

Always on the cutting edge.  Always light years ahead of the pack.  The very best there is!

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© 2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.

Happy 100th Birthday Billie Holiday!

a-billie-holiday

Billie Holiday.

07.04.191517.07.1959

God Bless The Child

Voice: Billie Holiday

Composition: Billie Holiday, Arthur Herzog Jr. c. 1939

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Fine and Mellow

Written: Billie Holiday c. 1939

Live TV recording 1957.

Voice: Billie Holiday

Piano: Mal Waldon

Double Bass: Milt Hinton

Guitar: Danny Barker

Tenor Saxophone: BenWebster & Lester Young & Coleman Hawkins

Baritone Saxophone: Gerry Mulligan

Trombone: Vic Dickenson

Trumpet: Doc Cheatham & Roy Eldridge

Drums: Osie Johnson

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Strange Fruit

Written: Abel Meeropol c. 1937

Composition: Billie Holiday c. 1939

Live TV Performance

Voice: Billie Holiday.

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Lover Man, Oh Where Can You Be.

Written: Jimmy Davis & Roger Ramirez & James Sherman c. 1941

Live performance 1958, Oakdale Music Theater, Wallingford, Connecticut.

Voice: Billie Holiday

Piano: Mal Waldron

Bass: Milt Hinton

Trumpet: Buck Clayton

Drums: Don Lamond

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One of my all-time favourite Billie Holiday tunes.  I first fell in love with it whilst working at the Underground Railroad Restaurant on King Street East just west of Sherbourne Street back in the late 1970s – all whilst finding time to run around the city taking ballet class and studying in high school then later at York University – when Salome Bey was doing her Cabaret show and her husband, Howard Matthews was part owner, along with Jazz drummer, Archie Alleyne.  There was an intense and wonderful Jazz education!

Too, there was that memorable Sunday Brunch in late 1982 at the actress, Patricia Neal’s grand Upper West Side apartment which Merlin took on a short-term sublet.  Frederick Jones and his Puerto Rican-born lover were there, along with a couple of dancer friends of mine and, of course, fellow dancer and friend of Merlin’s, Miguel Godreau.

Merlin the night we met, Friday, October 1, 1982, had excused himself from dinner at the Afro-Cuban restaurant, around from my West 49th Street apartment, on 9th Avenue in Hell’s Kitchen.  He had gone to make a phone call – ah yes, there was an age before the cellphone’s ubiquity – and cancelled getting together with Miguel.  They had been dating after Miguel had appeared in Ken Russell’s 1980 film, Altered States starring, William Hurt and who at that time was a member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

Just in case, I had proven an utter bore, Merlin had made alternate plans; however, after I had passed most of dinner to the groovy music massaging his burgeoning lap across the deuce from me with my nimbly dexterous pointed feet, Miguel did not stand a chance.

Besides, one does not exactly say no to one’s task companion when first meeting on the physical plane… again, especially when it was planned.  In any event, after fruit-filled pancakes drowned in Canadian maple syrup, Merlin and I – who by then had had multiple ménage-à-trois with Miguel – blew each other soft kisses whilst he sat admiringly looking at Miguel and me slow dance to this truly haunting tune.

Merlin almost never danced; however, our pas de deux between the sheets has left Merlin an unsurpassed lover of magical skills.

Happy Birthday Billie Holiday and, wherever you are, may your current incarnation be a most blessed lucid dream.  You know, I really ought to do her overleaves…

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© 2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.

Maple Leaf Rag.

1899 Maple Leaf Rag, Scott Joplin

Piano: Scott Joplin.

This is such a favourite of mine.  I include here as it is not traditional Jazz; however, as Scott Joplin would be reincarnated and be even more famous, I have chosen to include him here.  That, of course, is because the reincarnated Scott Joplin is the performer, Prince with whom Merlin was completely and utterly besotted and obsessed – the only performer about whom he felt this way.  

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© 2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.

Giant Steps.

© 1960 John Coltrane, Giant Steps, Atlantic Records

Tenor Saxophone: John Coltrane

Piano: Tommy Flanagan

Bass: Paul Chambers

Drums: Art Taylor

This has been the leap off point for many a flying dream and it has also been the way to best ground after truly momentous dream experiences.  Sheer genius!

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© 2013-2020 Arvin da Brgha.  All Rights Reserved.