Vern's Verbal Vibe

Singer-songwriter/multi-instrumentalist and purveyor of folk 'n' roll: spirit-filled sad songs made better.

March 27, 2006

I Like Long Walks on the Beach, Fine Dining, and Jazz

I'm pushing hard to finish my book on time, so a day off is a precious commodity. I schedule one every couple of weeks. Today was sunny and almost spring-like, so I went walking by the Beach. As always, the water proved a bigger draw than the boardwalk, so I parked myself on a rock and gazed out at Lake Ontario for the better part an hour. It was chilly, but rejuvenating.

After sunset, I caught the 501 car at the end of the line (Neville Park) and rode west till I got hungry. That happened somewhere in New Toronto. I had exactly $12 on me ... just enough for a medium pizza and an orange Gatorade. It was a real treat not to have to come home and cook dinner.

All the while, I listened to every Miles Davis album I own, in sequence. Now, I'm quite new to jazz and am still growing accustomed to its vocabulary. But any way you slice it, the man was both maverick and innovator. If you're at all familiar with Miles, you'll appreciate that Nefertiti to On The Corner covers a lot of territory and is hard to digest in one sitting. As such—and to deepen my understanding and enjoyment—I brought the liner notes along and read them on the streetcar. These days, I barely have time to listen to music, much less read the liner notes. And how I treasure well-written annotations like these! (On a related note, music criticism is probably my biggest literary influence by default.)


Blogger Dan said...

Hey, Vern!

I envy your day at the beach. I've got to get back there myself soon. Man, you listened to miles of Miles! I can certainly appreciate that you survived that feat, and it's probably an amazing experience if you can do it. That is some intense jazz.

Sounds like the book is going well. Can't wait till it comes out!

6:05 pm  
Blogger Ralph Smith said...

I see I've arrived between posts - the blogger is out? :)

Not exactly coincidence, I've been watching "Freddie Mercury - The Untold Story" on YouTube, - less coincidence cuz I'm no music afficionado. Say "Miles Davis" and I draw a blank - see?

Glad you're getting out and about once in a while, at least. Just think: when the book deal goes through, the cross-Canada book tour kicks off and...deja vu! :D

3:16 am  
Blogger vern said...

I'm having a harder time wrapping my brain around the pre-electric stuff; the fusion era is more immediately congenial to these rock 'n' roll ears. I'll be plunging in deeper shortly when The Complete In A Silent Way Sessions arrives on my doorstep.

Yes, the writing is going well, and yes, I'm itching to travel again. Can't wait for the deja-vu tour of Canada! For now, I can go anywhere within the TTC's radius ... if I could only find the time. Next day off this Sunday!

3:49 pm  

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