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300: “Nostalgia in Times Square / Angel Race” by Medeski, Martin & Wood

At a SiriusXM recording for a porn soundtrackTo celebrate #300, I’m posting a brand spanking new one from my all-time favorite law firm! Medeski, Martin & Wood fight insurance and drug companies in court with the same rigor and enthusiasm with which they tear through and assimilate musical genres.

(John Medeski – piano / Billy Martin – percussion / Chris Wood – bass)

MMW’s latest album, Free Magic (2012), is a selection of 5 lengthy live acoustic tracks from a tour in 2007. Watching them live is the ultimate way to experience their music. If you pay attention you can see them communicating with subtle glances and gestures, steering their heavily improvised musical creations with nearly telepathic coordination. Of course, they have been together since 1991, breathing each others’ emissions and syncing up their minstrel cycles.

The reactive chemistry and interplay of their music is something to behold. It’s very much like magic, an output greater than the sum of the inputs, and these guys can make it for free if you don’t count the 21 years of practice… and the fact that you pay to listen to them. Whatev. Enjoy.

Song: Nostalgia in Times Square / Angel Race
Artist: Medeski, Martin & Wood
Album: Free Magic
Label: Indirecto Records
Buy from: MusicToday | Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

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266: “Shoofly Pie” by The Wood Brothers

I wonder which one would win in a fistfight?The Wood Brothers, Chris and Oliver, have provided you with a seriously fine playlist so far. They’re on tour now, and they are excellent live. In fact, I will spit a beverage out of my face if you tell me you didn’t enjoy their live show whilst I am in the act of drinking a beverage.

Chris Wood sings more prominently on quite a few tracks on their fourth studio album, Smoke Ring Halo (2011), and that’s a good thing for a lot of young swooners out there. Sniff out “The Shore” if you wanna hear C-Dawg croon.

This one is a classic about love and appetite, “Shoofly Pie.” Enjoy.

Song: Shoofly Pie
Artist: Wood Brothers
Album: Smoke Ring Halo
Label: Southern Ground Artists
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

115: “Hey Joe” by Medeski, Martin & Wood

It's so obvious that John Medeski just farted in this picture.I shan’t post songs by the same artist very many times.  These guys deserve a double-post (see original post).

The notion of hearing a jazz piano trio cover Jimi Hendrix has a great deal of potential to initiate your gag reflex.  Medeski, Martin & Wood calls bullcrap on that.  French intended.

First video: a recording from an intimate live performance of “Hey Joe” at Tonic in NYC.  For some reason it has 3 1/2 minutes of dead time at the end.

Second video: a lo-def video recording of “Hey Joe” at a jazz festival from 2001 (thanks, astute readers!!).  Marc Ribot sits in for a smoking solo on this soul-searing rendition of one of Hendrix’s finest.  Mais, oui.

Always improvise.  And enjoy.

Song: Hey Joe
Artist: Medeski, Martin & Wood
Album: Tonic
Label: Blue Note
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes