Speak No Evil Jazz blog

Capital Public Radio's discussion of an art form born in America and celebrated worldwide.

subscribe

 We Get Support From:
Become a Supporter 
 We Get Support From:
Become a Supporter 

Falling In Love Supreme Finalist: Bob Stanley

  

I didn’t know how much I loved jazz when Dad played Bags Groove –

Milt Jackson, Miles – that slow anthem - almost every night during dinner.

Dad digs Modern Jazz Quartet too, so vibes filled

the sound track of our house above the Bay.

 

I didn’t know how much I loved jazz when my friend Pete put Monk on

at his parents’ place, and we were a little high,

so those crazy chords raced across my brain

spidering into patterns of synesthesia.

What was that?

 

I didn’t know how much I loved jazz when I took a class at American River College

to sing in Art LaPierre’s vocal ensemble.

I didn’t know we’d be swept away in waves of harmony

till we felt like Ellington’s sax section itself –

tight, tuned, swinging.

 

Working for Gary Vercelli in Studio A late at night, alone at the station,

listening to vocalists, the composers, the great soloists

selecting tunes for the next day’s show, I listened close,

but I didn’t even know then how much I loved jazz,

 

No, not until Addie Kelly passed away, and we went to the

African American Baptist Church in Vallejo, California and I heard the singing.

I heard the wailing and the interplay of God and humanity in the wild, sad

improvisation of gospel and blues, and there for the first time

I learned how much I loved;

I learned how much I loved jazz, too.

 

 

By Bob Stanley

Former Sacramento Poet Laureate, and a former intern at Capital Public Radio

 Falling In Love Supreme