Scratch Pad: Jordan, Molvær, Fiction

From the past week

I do this manually each Saturday, usually in the morning over coffee: collating most of the little comments I’ve made on social media (as well as related notes), which I think of as my public scratch pad, during the preceding week. These days that mostly means @[email protected] (on Mastodon). Sometimes the material pops up earlier or in expanded form.

▰ You almost have to admire how when DuckDuckGo doesn’t have a useful response it just shoves a bunch of unrelated stuff at you at random.

▰ The laptop keeps changing “mapo tofu” to “mayo tofu” and, well, ick

▰ RIP, saxophonist Kidd Jordan (1935-2023), one of the greats. I think the first time I saw his name may have been as part of the title of the last track (“Kidd Jordan’s Second Line”) on a Dirty Dozen Brass Band record, The New Orleans Album (1990), but I soon grew to learn about how much further out his music went, thanks to his work with Hamiet Bluiett, William Parker, and many others. Here he is live with drummer Andrew Cyrille just four years ago at the Vision Festival in Brooklyn, in June of 2019. Aim to be this vibrant at 84 — or, heck, at any age:

▰ It’s called The New York Times Spelling Bee but it should be called The New York Times Teaches You Random Words for Fish and Plants.

▰ Watching a new Nils Petter Molvær performance means keeping the video open in one tab while tracking down details in another on whoever else is in the band, because the trumpeter has always got great colleagues, here percussionist Erland Dahlen and bassist Berger Myhre.

▰ I read a bunch in March. I finished three novels and a long book of short stories in the process. The novels were Chemistry by Weike Wang, The Terraformers by Annalee Newitz, and Box 88 by Charles Cumming. (I reviewed the short story collection for a magazine, so I’ll wait until it’s out before mentioning the book here.)

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