Sunday, November 7, 2010

John Burnett Orchestra - Down For Dou...

John Burnett Orchestra - Down For Double-Delmark


     Most astute radio listeners of jazz know the distinguish on air voice of John Burnett. His daily show heard throughout the Midwest features ample doses of all manner of jazz from the earliest of eras to the present. And then there is the big band leader, John Burnett. And what a big and leader he is!
    Down for Double, his tribute to the "best bandleaders of swing" is a great primer for those wanting to hear the band sounds of yesteryear. The sounds that put big band music front and center of American music listening.
    The Disc's first 9 numbers from Glenn Miller, Ellington, Basie and Buddy Rich all swing like a big band should. All were recorded 'live' over a 5 year period at the Drury Lane and Fitzgerald's. High octane doses of In The Mood, In a Mellow Tone, One O'clock Jump, West Side Story, Sing, Sing, Sing, Out of Nowhere, and others are given a fresh redress. This is a big band that has to been seen 'live' to really feel its dancing pull. They are having a great swinging time!

Bill O'Connell

Bill O'Connell -Rhapsody in Blue-Challenge
    The wonderous thing about pianist Bill O'Connell is that dispite his latin baptismal he is an all purpose mainstream jazz cat. This latest offering proves the point. O'Connell sets the record straight with some straigh ahead grooves from start to finish. From the boisterous opener Monk's Cha-Cha to the bare knuckled 'Pocket Change', these tunes set the stage for an exciting disc through and trhough.
    O'Connell has enlisted a bunch of his running buddies in Dave Samuels; Richie Flores; Conrad Herwig, who only guests on the cut J-Man; Steve Berrios; a new name to these ears in bassist Luques Curtis sharing bass duties along with David Finck (who name was mysteriously omitted from the back CD cover); and the firey Steve Slagle, saxes. It is Slagle who gives a poingnant soprano offering on the lovely ballad, 'It Never Entered My Mind'. Don't think I've heard one done on soprano before. The cut J-Man is perhaps the disc's hippest groove swinger. This is a tight discs from beginning to end. This has got to be Bill O'Connell's working band. If no it outta be.
O'Connell, piano; Luques Curtis & Dave Finck, bass; Steve Berrios,perc; Steve Slagle, saxes; Richie Flores, perc; Dave Samuels,vibes, Conrad Herwig,tb.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Miles Davis/Gil Evans

Miles Davis/Gil Evans -Sketches of Spain- by Lew Soloff/Steve Richman & the Harmonie Ensemble
    The illustrious George Avakian posed the question, "why record a new version of a landmark LP album?"
    Kudos to Mr. Avakian but the retort is a resounding, Why Not?
    Indeed Sketches of Spain is a masterwork that blurred categories of both jazz and European classical music. And to this date no one has dared ventured its pithy harmonies and sanguine peaks and valleys. Just as many works of the European classical masters are redone, replayed and re-hashed yearly why not the masterpiece Sketches of Spain be accorded the same long overdue honor.
    One can think of a litany of trumpeters who might have filled the Miles delegate bill. Wynton Marsalis, Terence Blanchard, Jon Faddis....Yet it is Lou Soloff, hands down one of the finest trumpeters living today. Soloff is in fine form doing an admirable job over and above board, transforming the solo improvs as his own. Soloff does not in any way ape the Miles Davis sound vacuum, while a well meaning acolyte might have done so. Which is no slight to Davis. In fact, one could imagine a wild card such as Wadada Leo Smith performing an even pithier enactment. Couldn't one? 
    After the initial listening one is left panting for more. In fact, if Master Evans were alive today who knows if he would not have re-investigated even newer music out of which Sketches sprang forth? This is music that begs for more. A hallmark recording.     

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Jason Adasiewicz-Sun Rooms-Delmark

Jason Adasiewicz-Sun Rooms-Delmark
    "Space Music" is a term of endearment I once heard Sun Ra refer to his own music. Meaning i.e. 'his' music was from 'outer space'. It was endless and timeless like the vastness of the unknown. Esoteric as that might sound to the average or casual listener the music of avatars like Sun Ra was 'heavy', ethereal almost beyond earthly comprehension.
    Despite his other worldliness Sun Ra left a grand legacy and a legion of acolytes. While it would be something of a 'stretch' to call vibist Jason Adasiewicz a Sun Ra acolyte directly it wouldn't be out of the question that his music certainly bares a stark resonance and resemblance to the bygone space man.
    A new offering, 'Sun Rooms' features the nimble handed vibist in a spare trio setting of bassist Nate McBride and drummer Mike Reed. Perhaps the most 'out there' recording coming down from above in some time, over the past decade there has been a burgeoning new movement of creative artists from Chicago. All centering around the late Fred Anderson's Velvet lounge, on the southside and on the north side The Hideout, two of the most visible venues for the new music. Vibist Jason Adasiewicz is head and shoulders amongst that loose grouping which includes artists like Keefe Jackson, Dave Rempis, Josh Berman, David Boykin and others.
    Another interesting note is that just this past year there has been an noticeable upswing in recognition of vibists signaled by the death of iconic vibist Carl Leukaufe, who died at age 76 just this past August. Chicago has had a vibes renaissaince so to speak in mainstays Kathey Kelly and Jim Cooper and in recent months surfacing are Tony Normand, Andre Earls and new comer Preyas Roy.
    But in Jason Adasiewicz we have a visionary vibist. Hence the title Sun Rooms, certainly apropos because each tune on this new Delmark release brings bright moments of shining mystery and vivid wonder. The trio moves and breaths as one organic whole. Reaching back we've already alluded to Sun Ra but what about the arid blue tinge of vibist Walt Dickerson, a man who never got his media due. Adasiewicz solid strokes mirror Dickerson to be sure. None-theless the young Chicagoan like Dickerson is a harmonic forager of sound, color and rhythm. It is not surprising that Dickerson and Sun Ra did meet in the recording studio 40 years ago. So this recording eerily haunts the melodic membranes. Monkish, yes! But more Herbie Nichols-ish. Bassist McBride moves and pulses underneath not so much as a bedrock but as a blood-flow, life giver to the music. He knows Jason's shifty moves and scales all too well. And Reed is the jackknife dancer on drums, pithy and sharp. Reed can tip toe and jump, even stomp! That's the way a drummer should be. Their peak comes by way of the odd metered 'Off My Back Jack', an unearthed tune from the unrecognized Philly pianist Hassan Ali. But there are more delights herein. Each tune is filled with the sun's warmth.
Jason Adasiewicz,vibraphone; Nate McBride, bass; Mike Reed, drums.
1.Get in There 2.Life 3.Stroke 4.Rose Garden 5.You Can't 6. Off My Back Jack 7.Overtones of China 8. Warm Valley

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Ahmed Salaheldeen

Reflections on 
Ahmed Salaheldeen
L.A. Emenari, III


    I first met Brother at Malcolm X college in 1971 and was immediately struck by his wearing of the traditional Arabic headdress called a, 'kuffiyah' and most importantly by his very public acknowledgement, his recognition of an audience's applause and appreciation. He would wave or rotate his hands in a circular movement above his head. It was years afterward that he revealed its meaning to me. I never asked because somehow I knew what it mean. Supreme culture is like that unspoken, inbred and imbued.
    After all, Ahmed Salaheldeen termed his music and cultural expression as, 'International Jazz Culture' (and his name - Salaheldeen literally meant: The religion of prayer/peace).
    (Another reason I was attracted to him was because he bore a striking resemblance to my very own father. They both had this smooth round cherubim face. I used to tell him we was probably kin).
    After our initial meeting we became fast friends and he took me into his world  becoming one of my teachers of Islamic, African and International Jazz culture. We had many, many conversations over dinner, drink, laughter and even shed a few tears. Because he shared with me some of his most intimate hurts but more importantly he spoke to me mostly of love. His love of this music we call 'jazz'. He told me of humility. He was a humble being. He'd played with the very top, the elite to those not so elite. I thank him for the many lessons he imparted.
    And of those lessons was his love of Charlie Parker - BIRD. I saw him once play over at the long closed Valhalla in Hyde Park all night long Bird's bebop bounce (hours of music we would broadcast 'live' over radio station WHPK-FM), with pianist Earl DeWitt, Eddie Calhoun on bass & drummer Ajaramu. They'd swing you into 'bad health' as they say. All of them are gone now yet we still hear their sound. Then not to be outdone a week later 'Salahdeen' (as many called him), did another all Bird tribute venue, this time he broke out only his flute and bassoon! Dig that! Bird on bassoon!
    As the Muslims say, Alhamdullilah! 
    But one of the clearest of memories that struck me most about Brother was this.... When you walked into his humble abode there sitting atop his piano was a framed piece of old worn parchment with some seemingly mystic scribble. It was a photo-copy of one of his immediate ancestors Freedom Papers from American chattel slavery, that peculiar institution. He was quite proud of that rarest of documents. Not many could lay claim to such.
    He'd point to it and say, "AllahuAkbar!" (God is The Greatest)
    And now on this day we say 'AllahuAbar' because of the spirit that was sent to us in Ahmed Salaheldeen. Thank you for this jazz man who truly gave us so much of his life and his music. God is truly the greatest!


Friday, September 10, 2010

Hadley Caliman Passes

Longtime saxman out of California Hadley Caliman dies of Liver failure yesterday. I was so blessed to have spoken with him several years ago. I interviewed him for my radio show in 2006. He was very gracious and cordial. I first became aware of him thru one of his Catalyst recordings of the early 70s. He led an exciting but atypical jazzman's life. The entire world of jazz owes him a bit of gratitude.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Rich Corpolongo

Rich Corpolongo - Get Happy - Delmark


    Some years ago, it seems like decades I first caught reedist Rich Corpolongo with Marshal Vente's big band. Heretofore only having a vague idea of who he was over the years hence I've come to have a healthy respect for his prodigious abilities as an accomplished musician. Not having heard any of Mr. Corpolongo's prior Delmark recordings I was in for a slap upside the head upon listening to his latest, 'Get Happy'.
    After repeated listening what came to mind was how reminiscent he was of the late Chicago legend, master saxist Joe Daley!
    Then another slap upside the other side of my big noggin when the revelation hit me like a ton of bricks! Well guess what friends? Rich Corpolongo was a Daley acolyte!
    A quick perusal of Rich's web page bore that out. He and Daley were 'thick as thieves'! They were a hot item for some years little did I know. But the history of jazz is abundant with stories like this one. Daley's gone on but Rich Corpolongo upholds his legacy. And proudly!
    "Get Happy" is a tour-de-force in your face, pure jazz sax trio if there ever was one. A master himself Corpolongo joins forces with two other masters in bassist Dan Shapera and Rusty Jones, who at this juncture in history is one of the greatest living drummers around. Highly musical and ever alert, Jones is a lyrical percussion painter who summons the nimble flexibility of a Buddy Rich to the polyrhythmic determinism of Elvin Jones. More importantly he's his own man and is a joy to hear (and to watch).
    Long noted for his alto sax and smaller reeds this time out Corpolongo handles the tenor. And man does he handle it! Could this be a 'tribute' to his mentor Joe Daley? After-all Daley was well known for his tenor-bass-drum excursions. A 'freedom' traveler well versed in the rules of the road Daley could be 'outside' yet possess a grounded 'inside' methodology. To the max degree Rich Corpolongo and his men flesh out a vibrant program of 'standards' that won't disappoint any listener. In the relaxed atmosphere of an acoustic friendly small theatre housed in the Sherwood Music School Corpolongo and crew, swing, swoop and maneuver up and over "Mangoes"; "Dewey Square"; "Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams" and several others including the title tune. With this superior recording one could only wish more success, notoriety and gigs for a well deserving Dan Shapera, Rusty Jones and Rich Corpolongo. Lord knows they surely can use it. An audience awaits! 

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Helen Sung

   Helen Sung- Going Express - Sunnyside SSC 1263
    A prominent bassist once confided to me that he had on-going problems getting a record date as a leader. And when the occasion did arrive, he hired top flight cats recorded the session in record time and released it on his on indie label. Much to his dismay record distributors and a handful of club owners told him the same thing - "You got a band full of sidemen"!
    He said that it became a running joke. A band full of sidemen.
    Here he was an experienced bassist and he had some of the best jazz guys around and couldn't catch a 'cold' as they say! Such is the similar fate of many jazz musicians. From the well known to those who labor in the vineyards for years, sometimes decades in relative obscurity. In fact, there seems to be a circuit, a thriving one of 'sidemen' who operate just under the radar. They work the neighborhood clubs and taverns, some art houses and outdoor festivals but never seem to grasp the brass ring or nail down the big contract. Was it Mingus who deemed them 'beneath the underdog'?
    That's where labels such as Sunnyside and others with vision come into play. Yet exposing newer and 'forgotten', 'overlooked' and 'maligned' talent can be a tricky thing in this business. Who will be the next, 'big star', the next Joe Lovano or Wynton Marsalis? And much to it's credit Sunnyside has gone the distance in exposing such here-to-fore talent deserving wider recognition. It could be a 'hit or miss' proposition.
    One of their new talents pianist Helen Sung offers up a 'live' quartet session. Of the music documented one could ask if this was the best of what was recorded? If so then this is no more than a run-of-the-mill date that is quite the forgettable proverbial session of 'all sidemen'. Sung, an able but stiff handed, non swinging keyboardist chooses the right guys in Lonnie Plaxico, bass; Eric Harland, drums and Seamus Blake, reeds. Well, sort of. Plaxico is rudimentary and has always seemed the pop/smooth jazz bassist. He's got no thump in his bump. Eric Harland is indistinguishable from the other Eric. Eric McPherson. In fact, aren't they the same guy? And Blake I couldn't pick his tenor and soprano sax work out of a line-up of Tommy Smith to Ralph Bowen. Just has no identifiable sound and gives up school taught lick after lick after lick.
    If this sounds disparaging there is no cause for alarm for I'm sure Ms.Sung will probably have much success in the world of academia, where there is a need to teach jazz. But right now she's hardly ready for prime time. Being a 'sideman' can be tough.
L.A. Emenari, III

Rajiv Halim Quintet

Rajiv Halim Quintet/ Live @ the Velvet Lounge
  When considering Charlie Parker would have been 90 years old in August 2010 it puts life's blessings into perspective. The 1950s after-all seem more than many lifetimes ago when Bird sunk into eternal slumber. With the median average life expectancy for African American men today being 73 Bird's early demise at 35 was unusual for any era.
    None-the-less in keeping with those blessings, relative youngster Rajiv Halim and his also youthful co-horts did themselves and Bird quite proud. Only days before Bird's celebrated birthday, on a misty Thursday night down at the Velvet lounge Halim's quintet lit up the jazz universe with some stratospheric sounds from yesteryear  above and beyond. They spoke in the not too ancient herald tongues of the bebop language with a renewed freshness and mined fervor.
    Making a name for himself the alto saxophonist has been gaining steady ground around town as perhaps one of the best and brightest of jazz players in some time. (Halim along with another young saxophone wonder, Dudley Owens have taken a back seat to no one). The quintet's Charlie Parker tribute that night couldn't have been a more perfect setting. Not three months removed from the late owner Fred Anderson's death, housed in the Velvet are photos and portraits of Bird draping the rooms walls like patron saints symbols warding over the comings and goings of all that enter. Ironically Anderson's first venture as a club owner some 20 odd years hence was naturally christened in honor of his musical hero, 'The Birdhouse'.

    Lest we forget impresario Joe Segal's foresight designating each and every August since Bird's passing 'Charlie Parker Month', it is a proverbial cold slap upside the head to awake, rise and shine! Recognizing the true genius and importance of such a significant chapter and man in America's history.

    Going about the business of keeping the flame Rajiv Halim's group 'with no shame in their game' as said in the hood did just that! They took care of business.
    The quintet's rhythm section highly tight and swinging note for note includes bassist Andrew Voight's insightful, bountiful buttress along with drummer Xavier Breaker holding it down takes a back seat to no one. Breaker, a new name to these eyes and ears is a smooth moten whirlwind of motion and rhythm. Not overwhelming but yielding that right touch to command torrents of thunder and no nonsense ease of swing. He called to mind the outright back beat bashing of a Jack DeJohnette and the downright groove of a Papa Jo Jones and J.C. Heard. Breaker has the right name for a drummer cause he damn near broke open the drums with pure movement and able grace. He's a very musical drummer as well who listens to every nuance of band-mates, particularly that of pianist Michael King, whom he seem to zero in on every step of the way.
    King is also a new name and someone to watch out for. He is a thought provoking soloist who seems to be content investigating the symmetrical harmonic intricacies of the musics melodic content. He takes chances and seemingly devilish dares at times that can throw one's sensibilities into a cacophonous tizzy. He's very much akin to the intellectual vices of an Andrew Hill and/or atmospheric Herbie Hancock. King forces you to listen carefully and in this regard he can be somewhat mysterious, oddly frustrasting, yet hip and sparklingly original.
    Out front is Halim's musical soul mate in trumpeter Marquis Hill. One could ask no more for a complimentary partner. Hill is world class talent. No question about it. He can conjure up images of the brawnish bluster of Lee Morgan to the searing no holds barred note bending rapidity of Chicago legend Billy Brimfield (the late Anderson's long time sparring foil). Hill would easily fit the front line of any Jazz Messenger band of any era. He is quite a joy to hear. 
    Leader Rajiv Halim's distinctive quality is of that an attentive listener and all aware presence. Armed with a big fat beautiful sound akin to long gone masters like Cannonball Adderly Halim's thrilling solos can fill the heart, mind and any room (with or without air), with a joyous revelry and emotive fluidity. Halim has a take-no-prisoner approach something very much like Bird did - play every solo with undeniable passion and artistry. A young master in the making Halim seems to breeze through a program of Bird fare such as 'Passport' and 'Chi Chi' and several other long shelved chestnuts. He is the delightful balladeer and soulful wailer on originals such as 'The Hardworker'. He's fluid with a creative stream of consciousness that comes from some unknown wellspring within. He is an incredibly thought provoking and insightful soloist.
    With the quintet's median average age hovering around 30 years there is no limit in sight. That is a real blessing. Charlie Parker tributes will abound and so will picturesque landscapes of Ellingtonia to Ornette to maybe even vistas of the late Fred Anderson. We can only hope so for the music is in the artisticly able bodied head, heart and hands of Rajiv Halim and his men.
by L.A. Emenari, III

John McNeil/Bill McHenry

John McNeil/Bill McHenry - Chill Morn He Climb Jenny - Sunnyside SSC 1268
    Let it be said that this writer is 'officially' dubbing this band, 'The Mac Band'. And I'll bet 2 to 1 that title has already been taken. After-all two guys with the last names beginning with Mc its a natch! And another thing about these two is that their music is full of pathos and humor.Throw in some tense drama for effect. And from their CD liner pics both appear faintly familiar. McNeil, as the iritable neighborhood coot who walks up and down the street carrying old newspapers and mumbling to himself. And McHenry comes off as the hilarious yet once rebellious ex-punk rocker waiting on the next prank to pull or beer to down. Whom else would have a CD titled, "Chill Morn He Climb Jenny"? What the hell!!!???
     Appearances aside these guys along with their more than able rhythm team of Joe Martin, on bass and Jochen Rueckert at the drums are remarkably a no nonsense ensemble.     
    Recorded 'live' at the Cornelia Street Cafe the Mac Band from their first very notes on this CD are serious arbiters of some great jazz. 'Moonlight In Vermont' comes off weirdly like a Bill Dixon-Archie Shepp opus. Dry and pale but damn fulfilling. Which bespeaks tenorist McHenry's bold and sometimes pithy death defying solos. The man grunts, groans, squawks and in the same breath reels off these thrilling rapid fire staccato cadences - ala Grossman-Liebman in their Elvin Jones days. McNeil on the other hand is a lingual painter. With a plaintive lyricism McNeil never runs out of fluid ideas and thoughts. And the slate of tunes they've chosen are arid landscapes for their unrestrained interplay. I can think of no one else who would have the where-with-all let alone audacity to play 'Maid In Mexico', 'Batter Up' and 'Bea's Flat', three moldy oldies that get a clean redress here. On top of these the 'Mac Band' pulls out a Wilbur Harden tune, 'Wells Fargo'! The nerve of these guys! They're balls can't be bigger! Nor are their hearts because they do an incredible job. They are breathtaking! This recording is a minor classic from beginning to end.
    When talking about 'freedom' in music, or the authentic 'avant garde' - jazz thy name is McNeil and McHenry - the Mac Band! 
John McNeil,trumpet/ Bill McHenry, tenor saxophone/Joe Martin, bass/ Jochen Ruekert,drums 
L.A.Emenari, III

Rez Abbasi

 Rez Abbasi Acoustic Quartet - Natural Selection - Sunnyside SSC 1264

    Undeniably guitarist Rez Abbasi is one of the most unusual guitarists today. Not so much because of his style per se but because of the refreshing playing situations he puts himself in. (Admittedly, this writer was never really endeared to Abbasi's music prior to this recording. But prejudices aside I've been won over).
    With the burgeoning ascent of 'world music' as a 'legitimate' aesthetic classification, being a branch of the jazz tree does instrumentalists like Abbasi well. They are able to have a 'toe-hold' in both arenas thereby bridging a much needed gap audience wise. The only 'grey' area is the melding of 'world music' with 'smooth jazz' genres by some well meaning record companies.
    This new recording by Abbasi's Acoustic Quartet, 'Natural Selection' on paper seems spare, with guitar, vibes, bass and drums. Yet because of Abbasi's great writing and unique arrangements of tunes like Joe Henderson's 'Punjab'; Keith Jarrett's 'Personal Mountains' and a Bill Wither's nod, 'Ain't No Sunshine' this quartet comes up sounding a lot larger than what appears on paper. There are some moments like on the disc's opener, 'Lament' that sonically harken back to the ECM sound of the 70s;  an eerily ornate and stately atmospheric aura recalling Ralph Towner, Egberto Gismonti and John Abercrombie.
    In the discs liner notes Abbasi is very clear on his vision for the music, "the blend of the acoustic guitar with vibraphone is one I've envisioned for years and that I've not heard so far on other recordings". And that, "I was conscious of magnifying the group's unique chamber-like sound..."
    And yes, there are moments of chamber-like playing and essence. Which gives a nod, if ever so slight to the genius of John Lewis. But it is the cohesive quality of continuity that ultimate gives us a satisfying session and anticipation of things to come. Hopefully Abbasi will flesh out more acoustic terrain for all to hear.
(Kudos to Christopher Drukker for the tremendous cover art)
Rez Abbasi, acoustic guitars/ Bill Ware, vibraphone/ Stephan Crump,acoustic bass/ Eric McPherson,drums


L.A. Emenari, III

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What Day Was That?


'What Day Was That...'?




Was it a week ago


We strolled, slowly

side by side.

You and that 

Mona Lisa muse.

Or perhaps it was


Siting real close 

to one another.

Me, wanting to

 nudge hands

 with yours.

Or Could it have been


Standing there

looking in the mirror,

you at me, me at you.

 Undressing hurriedly.

Nope! It's gotta be


Both spread Eagle

cross the living room floor

frivolously delighting 

in games of jax & cards.

Or what about...


We lit up the kitchen,

with savor, tang and flavor.

First you tasting, 

then my nose to the pot.

Yeah, right, it had to be


Laying so close,

so close we could

hear each other breath

Our prayers of








2009 @ L.A. Emenari, III


The Dancers


The Dancers





Sumptuous notes surround

their movements

like silken smoke wafting

from a flame.

Their entwined hands,

heels and hearts 
spun hypnotic pirouettes

woven by Marvin Gaye's

insatiable passion

and Peabo's power paced

love pull.

Their bodies whirl

and oscillate

as if driven by a Godly

motor hidden away

in their heads. 

The clock on the wall


Not their steps

but the beats in their


Glowing so,

circulating syncopated


only they feel

on the crowded floor.







Copyright@ 2008 -

L.A. Emenari, III









I gaze behind the Rainbow

to the Rivers edge

where you solemnly bathe.

Invoking a longing to be both

soap and sponge

Coveting your very towel.

Blue and Purple asters chaperon

your steps towards me,

enfolding each twinkling

of the Sun, Moon & Stars 

draped as Our canopy

above us. Your aroma

tranquilizes my dreams,  

 and I anoint your feet

with precious oils of Hyacinthe,

 herbs of Rue and Rosemary.

I gaze behind the Rainbow

your chimera dazzles and intoxicates

as Starlings and Swallows hover.

The River flows

bejeweled after you've left

for the harbor of my arms.








L.A. Emenari, III


Speaking in Tongues

Speaking in Tongues





Put my Tongue to your Mouth

So that I might taste the

Words of your heart.


Put my Tongue to your Breast

feeding me as you did

the Hungry.


Put my Tongue to your Hands & Limbs

so weight & burden

will be light. 


Put my Tongue to your Navel & Womb

so that I hear

Children's singing smiles.


Put my Tongue to your Feet

so that I smooth

your pilgrimage safely.


Put my Tongue to your Back, Shoulders & Neck

so that I leisure

your rest at evening tide.


Put my Tongue to your Ears & Forehead

so that my Whispers

strengthen & resolve. 


Put my Tongue to your Eyes

that I may silently capture

your image, frame by frame

by Frame.





Copyright @ 2008

L.A. Emenari, III



Solomon's Prosposal

Solomon's Proposal 



If I summoned 

flocks of Pink and Red Flamingos

to bring you here

Would you Come to me?


Just Asking...


If I seek the Grand Commision

of all Roses and Orchids

Would you wear their perfume for Me?


Just Asking...


If I snatched the 

Moon's Light and 

fashioned it into a gown

Would you don it for Me?


Just Asking... 


If I commanded a Horde

of Elephants to donate

their Ivory tusks for a throne

Would sit next to Me?


Just Asking...


If I ruled sovereign over

thousands of servants

dredging Earth's Silver, Diamonds & Gold

Would you adorn yourself for Me? 


Just Asking...


If I drained the Nile

pouring it into

A Golden Chalice

Would you drink with Me?


Just Asking...


If I sought the lush

Vineyards, Orchards and Green Valleys 

at the marbled table

Would you Sup with me?


Just Asking...


If I took Both Our Hearts

and Spiraled a Staircase

to the Stars

Would You Promise Yourself to Me...?


Just Asking...









2008 @ L.A. Emenari, III




Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Playlist for 'What Is This Thing Call...

     Playlist for 'What Is This Thing Called Jazz:Adventures in Modern Music' by L.A. Emenari, III - WHPK-FM 3/15/2010


1. Rex Richardson-Jazz Upstairs/Live at the Bar Guru Bar-Summit
2. Ari Ambrose & Stephen Riley-Tenor Treats-Steeplechase
3.Steve Colson-The Untarnished Dream-Silver Sphinx
4.Roger Rosenberg-Baritonality-Sunnyside
5. Marc Pompe-Hi-Fly-Marc Pompe
6.Famoudou Don Moye & Eliel Sherman Storey-Through the Fire-Transitions East
7.Yusef Lateef/Adam Rudolph-Towards The Unknown-YAL/Meta
8. The Ullman/Swell 4-News? No News-Jazzwerkstat
9.Ahmad Jamal-A Quiet Time-Dreyfus Jazz
10.Madame Pat Tandy-Remembers Irene Reid-Blueark
11. Vincenti Espi-Tras Coltrane-Fresh Sounds
12.Ernie Krivda-November Man-C.I.M.P.
13. Reggie Washington-A Lot of Love, Live!-Bang Music
14. Alva Nelson-Soul Eyes-KKM
15. Walter Smith III-Casually Introducing-Fresh Sounds
16.Phil Brown & The New Arts Jazztet-Bright Side-ACP
17. John Vanore & Abstract Truth-Curiosity-AC
18. Eric Frazier Quintet-Live at Cecil's Vol.1 & 2-Cecil's Swingin
19. Adam Rudolph & Ralph Jones-Yeyi-Meta
20. Makaya Ntshoko & The New Tsotsis-Happy Hour-Steeplechase