Sunday, January 4, 2015

Sunday Night Music

was a music program that aired on NBC in the late 1980s. I was vaguely aware of it back in the day, but never watched it. I've now watched three or four episodes on YouTube and I'm quite impressed with its jazz-anchored eclecticism. Hal Wilner was music coordinator and, presumably, is responsible for much of the eclecticism, and the fact that it works musically.

Here's the program that caught my attention (I forget just how I bumped into it):

It starts with a slightly off-kilter version of "America" ("My Country 'Tis of The") which ends on a koto solo. Rahsaan Roland Kirk is there in video clip (he'd died in 1977) but Pharaoh Sanders is there live. Can you dig it, Pharaoh Sanders live on national TV!? To be sure it's late night on Sunday, but still, Pharaoh Sanders. Stevie Ray Vaughn kicks rocks hard, as one would expect, and Van Dyke Parks, well, another eclecticism. Hosted by David "Big Hair" Sanborn, who holds down the pop end of alto saxdom.

Here's another show, featuring Bootsy Collins, Alvin Toussaint, and Carla Bley (notice how much her daughter, Karen Mantler, looks like her; it's the hair):

I'm a long-time fan of Bley's, ever since A Genuine Tong Funeral (her compositions, headlined by Gary Burton). She's sounding like Thelonius Monk in a duet with Steve Swallow (bass).

I'll be watching more of these. You should, too.

No comments:

Post a Comment