Archive for October 8, 2011

A Sonnet in Autumn

Posted in Poetry with tags , , on October 8, 2011 by telescoper

What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why,
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain
Under my head till morning; but the rain
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh
Upon the glass and listen for reply,
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain
For unremembered lads that not again
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry.

Thus in winter stands the lonely tree,
Nor knows what birds have vanished one by one,
Yet knows its boughs more silent than before:
I cannot say what loves have come and gone,
I only know that summer sang in me
A little while, that in me sings no more.

Sonnet No. XLIII by Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950)

Honeysuckle Rose

Posted in Jazz with tags , , , on October 8, 2011 by telescoper

I’m in a vegetative mood today and the old energy levels aren’t high enough to post anything demanding, so I thought I’d put up a piece of music for your entertainment and edification. This was recorded in Paris, on April 28th 1937 and it revolves around a lengthy  tenor saxophone solo by the great Coleman Hawkins. Inspired by his sojourn in Europe, Hawkins returned to New York to record probably the most famous tenor solo ever, on the classic ballad Body and Soul, but this shows a side to his playing that was more familiar to swing era jazz fans. Listen to the drive that he injects into this performance combined with that “heavy” tenor tone, and you’ll understand why he was regarded as the pre-eminent tenor soloist of the 30s.

Other members of the band include Benny Carter who plays the alto solo near the end and who obviously did the arrangement for the four saxophones – nobody else in jazz history has ever managed to get such a biting sound out of small saxophone section as Benny Carter. And if that weren’t enough there’s a bonus in the unmistakeable form of  Django Reinhardt‘s guitar. Enjoy!