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Blues And Haikus

Blues And Haikus

November 15, 2011
3.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mr. Matthew Mclaughlin on September 15, 2011
Format: Audio CD
First, please ignore the above reviewer.
I'm glad the previous reviewer mentions Tom Waits. Let me point out that this was THE album which Tom Waits especially loved.
In one rare (bootleg) interview with Waits from 1974, he mentions how Kerouac's recordings were "real effective".
If you like the atmospheric smoky sax which sets up the perfect backdrop for Tom Waits' "Small Change" spoken verse track from the album of the same name, you will LOVE this recording. The only track which I feel could have been left off was the second one called "Hard-hearted old farmer" which sounds like a one-take throwaway (which is annoying because it seems like they could have been really on to something here if only they had worked at it a little more!) and that's the only reason I don't give this 5 stars.
There is another song on this CD which will remind you of the song about Neil and Jack (Jack&Neil/California Here I Come) which Waits recorded on his Foreign Affairs album.
KOn this album of Kerouac's though, you have a nice blend of great sax playing from Al Cohn and Zoot Sims (Kerouac's favourite tenorman incidentally) and Kerouac's breath-taking imagery which is without parallel - conjuring up such vivid (and sometimes stark) pictures in your mind.
As someone living in Japan and familiar with this type of poetry, I can also say with a fair degree of confidence that Kerouac has a strong (perhaps natural) affinity for haikus. Even though he does not rigidly follow the rules of haiku - such as having to include a 'seasonal' word or the syllable rhythm, he strings together the 'essence' of flashing images in beautiful zen-like minimalist fashion.
For all serious Kerouackians out there, this is NOT to be missed.
One final note - it sounds like Jack and co.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
This is a messed up version of this album. This was one of three CDs released by Rino records in the 90's. I know because I have it. This recording is screwed up with the jazz drowning out Kerouac on many of the tracks. Perhaps the cover is wrong. Anyway, this was a very disappointing purchase. Get the Rino three CD collector's pack and skip this poorly balanced studio recording.
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Format: Audio CD
Although Jack Kerouac was the "voice of his (beat) generation," it was his writing - rather than his speaking - voice that became well-known. His three albums of spoken word poetry and prose, two from 1959 and one from 1960, received little circulation or critical notice upon their initial issue, and have only been spottily reissued ever since. Rhino's 1990 box set The Jack Kerouac Collection included all three albums, as does the recent The Complete Collection, and individual album reissues have been available off and on as imports. Rock Beat now adds domestic reissues of Kerouac's first two albums (originally released on the indie Hanover-Signature label), Poetry for the Beat Generation and Blues and Haikus.

Where Poetry for the Beat Generation was an impromptu session with Steve Allen tinkling piano melodies behind Kerouac's recitations, Blues and Haikus is more of a conversation between Kerouac and his accompanists, Al Cohn and Zoot Sims. Rather than reciting across background music, Kerouac trades riffs with Cohn and Sims, each responding to the tone, rhythm and content of the other. Even Cohn's piano sounds more responsive to Kerouac than did Allen's improvised backings. Kerouac sounds more comfortable in this environment; as Gilbert Millstein's original liner note suggest, this second effort is less tentative and more authoritative than Kerouac's previous recorded outing.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Item delivered on time, was as described
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