Friday, December 26, 2008

Whose Birthday?


Driving ambling around Tres Leches today, in our wondrously wintry 81 degrees Fahrenheit, I stumbled onto KRTU's lunchtime jam celebrating jazz diva Cassandra Wilson's "birthday." I invert those commas, my brothers and sisters, because it has long been my impression that CW's birthday in JacksonMississippi was December 4, 1955. This has been tattooed inside my skull for two reasons: I adore Ms W's smoky husk and December 4th is the day after mi bambino's December 3rd birthday. Every time I heard the dj reiterate the December 26th (and no, this was not an archived show) celebration, my lint collector brain sparked in minor umbrage. Such is my penchant for lowbrow drama. Yes, I did indeed email KRTU with my contrasting information, but I also took the occasion as reason enuff to also become, finally, a member of this very fine jazz station. If I'm gonna complain AND enjoy an awesome CW set, I might as well pay for the privilege.

And what a privilege. Pulling into the Whole Foods parking lot, Mr. Aaron Prado laid down a gorgeous track: Cassandra's cover of Joni Mitchell's already gorgeous "For the Roses." O...my...Lord.

Happy Birthday to us all. The world just got reinvented.

Twice this year, Ms Cassandra reinvented my worlds: this lovely cover and, earlier, as I was scouring the playlist.com site, and stumbled over her seminal version of Jimi's "The Wind Cries Mary" (you know how many levels that's gonna hit me on). God is good, my brothers and sisters.

Ms Cassandra and I go back to my conversion with her New Moon Daughter CD, and I wish I could say we went back even further. You see, as I was first snarfing up as much CW info as I could find ten years ago, I discovered that we went to high school in Jackson at the same time; I graduated a year before she did. I wondered, I did, in my bemused, self-absorbed head, if I "might have been her President," referring in my goofiness to having been the Callaway High School Student Body President in 1970-1971. Alas, no: Ms (then) Cassandra Fowlkes graduated across town from Murrah High School the following year.

While I've been writing this, CW's "For the Roses" has replayed several times on my newly installed Amazon MP3 player (installed just so I could nab this beauty with some extra Amazon pennies I had left over from Sister Laura's birthday present to me). I wish I could share the "power and the glory" of the sunseting smoky cicada husk that is this glorious voice, but I ain't figured it out just yet. But, go to the song ye must: Rhapsody's got it in their database; sadly, playlist.com does not (unless I can now upload it: we'll see). For another slice of Cassandra nirvana, Paschal's Playlist in the blog margin has her "WInd Cries Mary."

I suggest you run, don't walk. Your head will be aching until you do. CW will do the hand-laying.

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16 Comments:

Blogger gautami tripathy said...

Love that photo...

guts wrenching out....

10:44 AM  
Blogger murat11 said...

GT: Gotta love the boots and the floor and the voice...

10:46 AM  
Blogger Devil Mood said...

I'd be mad as hell if someone I thought was Sagittarius turned out to be a Capricorn, or vice-versa for that matter.

Mary has also a Jamie Cullum's version that I really like. I was listening to him just now.
Going to listen to the song.

12:59 PM  
Blogger anno said...

Gorgeous voice (you sent me exploring). Wouldn't mind a pair of those boots, as well.

2:03 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

DM: Damn straight, especially the Sag not Cap angle. No way Ms CW is a Cap, no way.

I'll give the other Mary a listen. Thanks for the lead.

2:10 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

anno: My head is a endless-looping CW soundtrack after yesterday and this morning. I hear all those shivering, echoing persussives bouncing off the inner walls, lovely roundings of the jaco-like bass.

2:15 PM  
Blogger anno said...

Gorgeous voice (you sent me exploring), and great boots, too. I might need a pair of those.

Wikipedia has her birthday as December 4, so once again your lint-collector has served you well. Maybe KRTU meant birthday in some larger, more general sense. As in, there are some birthdays I remember that were celebrated for weeks...

2:17 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

anno: No way this lint brain loses on CW the day after Walden's birthday, but I like your CassandraFest theory. I've yet to get an acknowledgement from the emailed dj, and I ain't holdin' my breath.

2:26 PM  
Blogger present said...

Being a birkie kinda girl, I've never had a pair of cowboy boots. But after checking out C.W. on youtube, I'm in for the boots and whatever else goes with it. I need to check out your playlist. I've been so sheltered!

7:44 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

present: In honor of your incipient Cassandra-hood, I'd say, go for a red pair to start out.

9:02 PM  
Blogger Tammie Lee said...

You sure have a way of telling a tale that makes me want to hear every note you share about! I have your playlist spinning as I write, many thanks!

11:53 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

Tammie: Call it my gift for lowbrow drama or self-dramatization. Either way, it's the music that counts.

Enjoy yourself up there in heaven.

5:20 AM  
Blogger Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Beautiful post and lovely tracks.

10:44 AM  
Blogger murat11 said...

Welcome back, Jen: The festival continues...

10:53 AM  
Blogger Tumblewords: said...

Have to check this out - sounds wonderful!

8:01 PM  
Blogger murat11 said...

Tumblewords: Go no further than today's (December 28th) post. I hope you enjoy CW's chipotle-flavored voice.

8:05 PM  

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