Friday, July 16, 2010


At 11:00pm, my cell phone vibrated. I was proofreading an article I had to file Monday. My family and friends know not to call me after 10:00pm because every night from 10:00pm to 12:00am I'm writing. I removed the telephone from the leather case. Cory, the barber, budding musician, single-dad, music lover and Jehovah’s Witness name appeared on the caller ID. I was annoyed. Then I remembered I told Cory my cell phone is always on, and he could call me whenever he wanted. Normally, Cory only calls me to talk about some great album he's listened to. I answered the phone. Cory's voice boomed out. I pressed the control on the side of the phone to turn down the volume.
"I get you at a back time,” Cory asked. In the background, I heard guitarist Marcus Miller playing behind neo-soul vocalists India Arie.
"Kind of. I was working," I answered. Cory sounded excited.” Have you heard the Herbie Hancock album 'Imagine," Cory asked.
"I didn't know he had a new album," I said.
"I know Herbie not one of your favorite jazz musicians, but you should check out this album anyway. It's great"
"Herbie no longer qualifies as a jazz musician in my book. I wrote him off when he started behaving like a rock star and playing that electronic fusing stuff."
"Chill out, man. You're too hard on Herbie. Some musicians want to evolve and not play the same old stuff their entire career. Miles raised Herbie, and you know Miles was all about staying hip to the latest trends.
"Miles was about keeping his lavish lifestyle. In my book, he fucked up a lot of great jazz musicians."
"I don't want to talk about Miles. ," Cory said.
“What’s so special about Herbie's new record," I asked.
"He's on this global unity kick. He included musicians from all over the world and some popular pop stars like Pink, John Legend, India Arie, Chaka Khan and Seal.
"What respectable jazz musician would record with an angry pop twit like Pink? Herbie has really lost his way.
"Just a minute ago you said he wasn't a jazz musician. Now you're calling him one.
“Herbie doesn't know what kind of musician he wants to be. So far, you haven't convinced me the album is worth buying.
"You already have your mind made up about Herbie. I thought music journalists are required keep an open mind."
"My mind is open enough. I'm not going to like every musician out there.
"The album is good from start to finish. Each musician blends perfectly with his style. The global unity theme is powerful. Herbie is an old man, and he's still trying to make a difference with his music."
"Sounds like a we-are-the-world-like project’."
"Sort of."
"That kind of album is dated"?
"You should check it out. You just may like it"
“I have a list of albums I want to hear," I said.
"Buy the album. You can get it at Borders Books and Music for $12.99. Listen to it for a few days. If you don't like it, I'll buy it back from you".
“If you’re that convinced I'll like the album, I'll get it.
I told Cory to have a good night. Then I turned off my cell phone, returned it to the leather case, and resumed proofreading my article.
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