January 23, 2010

All the President’s Jazz 2009 - Part 1 of 2

During the 2008 election, I read somewhere (Rolling Stone? People?) that Reggie Love, Barack Obama’s aide, was responsible for updating Obama’s iPod. (This was the beginning of the undue fascination with the idea that Obama had an iPod.) The article said that Reggie was introducing Obama to hip hop and that Obama was introducing Reggie to jazz artists. A week after the inauguration, I wrote to Reggie and asked if I could send him some CDs of jazz for the president’s iPod. He graciously accepted the offer. So, over the course of 2009, I sent 14 CDs’ worth of jazz to Reggie. Now, whether or not this music has made it to the president, I have no independent verification, but I have received a couple of thank you notes from the White House, so I have no reason to doubt that it has.
     This blog post and the next contain the complete playlist of jazz tunes that I sent to the president in 2009. This list reflects my tastes in jazz and should not be construed to be President Obama’s choices. The only clue to the president’s tastes I had was that the previously mentioned article named John Coltrane as an Obama favorite. This was perfect because I tend to favor music from the Fifties and Sixties. I am a big fan of soul-jazz/hard bop, particularly Blue Note artists from around 1960. This music represents my idea of a soundtrack to Obama’s cool persona - the Obama groove - if that makes any sense. In deciding what to send to the president, I always had in mind trying to provide an entertaining musical experience for the person with the toughest job in the world.
     The list is presented in alphabetical order by the artist’s first name. This is followed by the song title(s), with the name of the album it is taken from in parentheses. One other note: one of the CDs was of Christmas tunes; this list is presented separately at the end of the regular playlist. (The rest of the president's playlist is posted here.)

Al Cohn-Zoot Sims Quintet: You’d Be So Nice to Come Home To (You ‘n’ Me)
Al Grey & Jimmy Forrest: Salty Papa (Night Train Revisited)
Archie Shepp & Horace Parlan: Backwater Blues; Goin’ Down Slow; Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out; How Long Blues (Trouble in Mind)
Art Pepper & The Marty Paich Quartet: Marty’s Blues; You and the Night and the Music (Marty Paich Quartet Featuring Art Pepper)
Art Pepper: How Can You Lose (Smack Up); Begin the Beguine (Art of Pepper)
“Baby Face” Willette: Goin’ Down; High ‘n’ Low (Face to Face)
Barney Kessel: Contemporary Blues (To Swing or Not to Swing)
Barney Wilen: B.B.B. “Bag’s Barney Blues” (Jazz in Paris, Vol. 26)
Bebo Valdés Trio: El Reloj de Pastora; Route 66 (El Arte del Sabor)
Ben Webster: Poutin’ (King of the Tenors)
Benny Carter: Ennui; Moon of Manakoora (Sax a la Carter)
Benny Golson: Stacatto Swing (Gone with Golson)
Billie Holiday: Comes Love (Billie’s Best)
Blue Mitchell: March on Selma (Down With It)
Bobby Hutcherson: The Kicker (The Kicker)
Booker Ervin Quintet: Dee Da Do (Cookin’)
Buddy Defranco: Frenesi (Plays Artie Shaw)
Candido Camero & Al Cohn: Stompin’ At the Savoy (Candido)
Cannonball Adderley: Autumn Leaves; One For Daddy-O (Somethin’ Else)
Carmen McCrae & Dave Brubeck: Travelin’ Blues (Vocal Encounters)
Charles Mingus: Things Ain’t What They Used to Be (Mingus Dynasty)
Charlie Byrd: It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing); Meditation (Meditacao); Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) (Byrd By the Sea)
Charlie Parker: My Little Suede Shoes (Confirmation)
Chet Baker: Exitus; Summertime (In Paris: Barclay Sessions)
Clifford Brown: De-Dah; Minor Mood (Memorial Album)
Clifford Jordan Quartet: Lush Life (Spellbound)
Curtis Counce: Complete; Too Close for Comfort (You Get More Bounce with Curtis Counce)
Curtis Fuller: Hugore; Oscalypso; Soon (The Opener)
Dakota Staton: The Late, Late Show (Great Ladies of Song)
Daniel Visani: Sasha (Improvista)
Dexter Gordon: I Was Doing Allright (Doing Allright)
Diana Krall: Exactly Like You (From This Moment On)
Dianne Reeves: Pick Yourself Up (Good Night and Good Luck)
Dizzy Gillespie: Moonglow (Have Trumpet, Will Excite!)
Don Wilkerson: Senorita Eula (Blue ‘n’ Groovy, Vol. 2)
Donald Byrd: Dixie Lee (Blue ‘n’ Groovy, Vol. 2)
Donald Harrison: A Night in Tunisia; Take Five (Real Life Stories)
Duke Ellington & Johnny Hodges: Big Shoe (Side by Side)
Duke Pearson: Big Bertha; Sweet Honey Bee (Sweet Honey Bee)
Erroll Garner: Mambo Nights (Mambo Moves Garner)
Freddie Hubbard: You’re My Everything [Alt. Take] (Hub-Tones)
Gene Ammons: Carbow; Jug’s Blue Blues (Up Tight!); Hittin’ the Jug (Boss Tenor)
George Shearing & Peggy Lee: You Came a Long Way From St. Louis (Definitive George Shearing)
Gerry Mulligan & Paul Desmond: Wintersong (Gerry Mulligan & Paul Desmond Quartet)
Gerry Mulligan Quartet: Festive Minor (Best of the Gerry Mulligan Quartet with Chet Baker)
Gordon Samuelson: Blue Hawaii (Sax Hawaiian Style)
Grant Green: Cool Blues (Born To Be Blue); Have You Ever Had the Blues (Blues for Lou)
Hampton Hawes Trio: Hamp’s Blues (This is Hampton Hawes, Vol. 1); Blues for Jacque; Just Squeeze Me (But Don’t Tease Me); Yesterdays; You and the Night and the Music (This is Hampton Hawes, Vol. 2)
Hank Crawford: Mr. Blues (Mr. Blues)
Hank Jones: Summertime (Porgy and Bess)
Hank Mobley: Dig Dis (Soul Station)
Harold Land Sextet: West Coast Blues (West Coast Blues!)
Harry Edison & Ben Webster: Blues for Piney Brown; Gee, Baby, Ain’t I Good to You? (Gee, Baby, Ain’t I Good to You?}
Herb Ellis: Pap’s Blues; Royal Garden Blues; Soft Winds; Tin Roof Blues (Nothing But the Blues)
Herbie Hancock: Cantaloupe Island (Empyrean Isles)
Herbie Nichols: Lady Sings the Blues (Complete Blue Note Recordings)
Horace Silver: Bonita; The African Queen (Cape Verdean Blues); Song for My Father (Song for My Father)
Houston Person: Goodness (Prestige Profiles)
Ike Quebec: Blue Samba; Favela; Loie (Bossa Nova Soul Samba)
Illinois Jacquet: Desert Winds (Flying Home)

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