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  Listen Up! 10/14/02 Listen Up!

Monday, Oct. 14

Thelonious Monk, “Paris at Midnight,” Fuel 2000 Records. Well, add this to the short list of great jazz records. This is a revelation. Monk in Paris in 1967 with his quartet featuring Charlie Rouse, and then you add Clark Terry and Phil Woods to the mix on a few songs. Monk rarely got the chance to expand his vision beyond the admittedly brilliant stuff he did with the quartet. This was one of the few chances to add players, and even though they don’t appear on every cut, their presence seems to add fire to his imagination. Absolutely essential! This may be the reissue of the year.

Roddy Frame, “Surf,” Cooking Vinyl Records. Roddy Frame used to record as the only consistent member of Aztec Camera, but this is truly a solo project. It’s just him and an acoustic guitar, and he’s got some great melodies to share with us. I’m really not enchanted with this format, as I’m very keen on arrangements. But, Frame pulls it off and puts together a quite lovely little record here.

Various Artists, “Kindred Spirits: A Tribute to the Songs of Johnny Cash,” Lucky Dog Records. There are two Johnny Cash tributes out now, but this is the better one. Look at the line-up. Here’s Dwight Yoakam, Rosanne Cash, Bob Dylan, Little Richard, Keb’ Mo’, Travis Tritt, Hank Williams, Jr., Bruce Springsteen, Charlie Robison, Mary Chapin Carpenter with Sheryl Crow and Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Marty Stuart, and someone named Janette Carter. That lineup could do any kind of music and be worthwhile. Absolute highlight: Travis Tritt’s soulful remake of “I Walk the Line.” Lowlight: Keb’ Mo’ being too chicken shit to say he shot a man in Reno just to watch him die. He claims it was a lie instead.

--Steve Pick



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