Daily Archives: February 11, 2021

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Chick Corea, RIP

Sad news of the deaths of Hal Holbrook, Christopher Plummer, and Mary Wilson came over the past week or two. But tonight’s news was truly devastating for this long-time fan of one of the greatest musicians in the history of jazz: Chick Corea, who passed away on Tuesday at the age of 79.

I am without words. There are so many of his compositions that have graced “My Favorite Songs” throughout the years that I would not know where to begin in celebrating his legacy. Winner of 23 Grammy Awards, a master improviser and innovator, whether in acoustic or electric settings, playing standards or original fusion compositions, which defied categorization (encompassing jazz, rock, and classical influences), Chick was among the most important pianists of his generation.

I saw him in concert, a joyful tribute to his terrific 1978 album, “The Mad Hatter” (along with Herbie Hancock, Joe Farrell, Gary Burton, Eddie Gomez, Steve Gadd, Gayle Moran, and an orchestra). Check out that album, starting here [on YouTube].

RIP, Chick.

Song of the Day #1842

Song of the Day: Poltergeist (“Soundtrack Suite”) [YouTube link], composed by Jerry Goldsmith, continues our four-day salute to this great film score maestro. This suite, derived from his 1982 Oscar-nominated score to one of the best supernatural horror films, shows the enormous breadth of moods and motifs that Goldsmith typically delivered. The score lost out to one of the great triumphs of John Williams’s career (“E.T. the Extra Terrestrial“), but it’s with a little irony that it arose out of a collaboration with the director of that other film: Steven Spielberg.