For Ben and Raymond, they maintain a sentiment of baseball as religion; men of faith putting their trust both in the word of God and Vin Scully. They both believe in the Miracle of the Resurrection and Game 1 of the ‘88 World Series. Both have been unfaithful baseball bigamists; Raymond with the Angels and Ben with the Red Sox. Their faiths have undergone as much change as their favorite team's roster. So they write about it. They write about Baseball and they write about God.

Friday, November 13, 2009

We Can Talk Jazz Too...Right?

First of all have you heard that album?  Other then the cover art, it is a really good example of West Coast style piano jazz. 

Previn of course was a musical giant in the 50’s doing classic scores for many movies of the era.  He won four Oscars during his career.  He also conducted the London Symphony Orchestra and was musical director of the L.A. Philharmonic though much of the 80’s.  He was one of those guys who could do the big musical stuff but still had a heart for the jazz music he listened to and played when he was young.  The guy could conduct a performance of Swan Lake in the afternoon and then head down to a club and do Ellington covers all night.  My kind of guy musically.  And to complete our six degrees of Ben he was once married to Mia Farrow.  I wonder if he knows anything about abusive relationships.

Russ Freeman similarly was classically trained but grew up just in time to catch on with Jazz.  Born in Chicago and raised in Los Angeles he became a West Coast mainstay doing some really classic albums with Art Pepper and Chet Baker.  You know he was a good jazz player because he was a heroin addict at one time.  He later in his career he became a musical director for many of the night club acts that were still in Los Angeles.  A true icon of the West Coast Jazz/Cool Jazz scene.  He is also known for his numerous collaborations with drummer Shelly Manne.

Who coincidently was the drummer on this album.  Born in New York he relocated to Hollywood and began working on movie scores for the likes of Bernstein, Goldsmith, Mancini, and even our beloved John Williams.  Even though movie studio work paid the bills he would always prefer to play with his trio.  An absolute fixture in Los Angeles anyone coming through the area played with Shelly at one time or another.  He did a great album with Bill Evans I really like.  My favorite note about him is that  he had his own jazz club in the 60’s called Shelly’s Manne-Hole.  Which nowadays may make you wonder a little if it is the kind of club you want to be found in.  But it pretty much was the best jazz club in L.A. till it shut down in ’73.

Suffice to say the album with the enthusiastic lady on the cover of which you referenced is pretty good album with some really great artists playing on it.  If you can kind a copy I would recommend the purchase.

As to your actual question of what to name the team:  That is a predicament that has plagued owners for decades.  I find that most owners seem to petition to public for name ideas and then put it up to a popular vote so as to absolve themselves of any backlash that may come from the name not being liked by the fans.  Sadly this seems to lead to dull or non-interesting choices.  But you just said the Syphilis had a gun to my head and I have to choose.  Well let us get over any reference to movies or show business, such a name would be better suited to Vancouver, B.C. then L.A. any more.  A name like “The Quake” while appropriate is one dimensional and very A-League.  I would love to call them the L.A. Tacos.  I think that would be huge with the fans and promotional deals would be legion.  

But I think I would just call the team the Los Angeles Fairweathers, something the fans could really connect with and would understand.


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