Speak No Evil Jazz blog

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Gettin’ Moody With Devin: Feel Like Going Back To School

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Congratulations! You’ve made it through the first month of school. Here’s some jazz to go with the time of year and probably at least one of the subjects you’re taking.


Dinah Washington, “I Could Write a Book,” Dinah Washington: Finest Hour

I was originally thinking of Harry Connick, Jr.’s big-band version from the "When Harry Met Sally" soundtrack. I hadn’t heard Dinah Washington’s version, but I like it a lot.




Nat King Cole, “L-O-V-E,” any greatest hits compilation

Cole also recorded versions in Spanish, Italian, German, French, and Japanese, so if you can find those they might help you with future transitive verbs in whatever foreign languages you’re taking. Here’s a neat multi-lingual version. The English version is below.



Charlie Parker, “Ornithology,” any greatest hits compilation

This song is the only reason I remember “ornithology” is the study of birds. It was written by Parker and is a reference to his nickname, “Bird.” He was called that because of his quick, bird-like way of playing.



Randy Halberstadt, “In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning,” Parallel Tracks

Please tell me you’re not already pulling all-nighters, but if you are here’s one for that. Halberstadt is a great pianist from Seattle. I’d trust any recording carrying his name.



**WILD CARD!** Tom Lehrer, “New Math.”

I will always be grateful to Alan Ray for introducing me to the work of Tom Lehrer. I’d never heard of this “new math” movement that preceded my existence and dislike of the subject. Don’t know how I would’ve felt about it since I don’t like the math I learned anyway.



Other playlists to check out for the fall include this one and that one.

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