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Friday, March 10, 2006

Stanley Crouch can give me a pain, but when he's right, he's right. A few weeks back I discovered that I'd nearly maxxed out my harddrive. Some investigation revealed that this was because I had damn near 20gb worth of music there. Reasoning that anything I had on CD could be re-loaded, I cleaned house by deleting any artist represented by more than two album's worth of material. What I didn't know was that this would also purge my iPod-- at least, as I had it set up. The result was an interesting listening experience, with a lot of music that had been overlooked percolating to the surface. No more Miles, no more Monk, no more Beatles, no more Dylan-- and no Trane, among others. Truth to tell, though, I need to hear that music. I especially missed Coltrane, due, probably to the amount of time lately that I've been past Pinelawn, where he is buried. I can't find myself on LI without wanting to hear "Softly As In A Morning Sunrise" or "Blue Train" or "While My Lady Sleeps" or "Lush Life" or-- you get the picture.

So I've been reloading things. I was somewhat less discriminating last time. One of the things that is fun about the iPod, after all, is filling it up, and as music lover I have always been inclined to be something of a completist-- I can't tell you how many versions of "Autumn Leaves" I own, and the redundancies in my Dylan collection are horrible to contemplate (even though, like Ron Rosenbaum, "I always feel that when an artist is obsessed with returning to one of his early works, it's worth our while to take the proper time to understand why.")

All of which is a long way of getting back to Mr. Crouch. I was listening to "Cresent" just the other night, taking advantage of the opportunity reloading my iPod presented, and there's no getting around the fact that it is pretty terrific. Is it "John Coltrane's Finest Hour Before he jumped into the aesthetic abyss"? Well, that's where Mr. Crouch and I might differ-- I think "aesthetic abyss" is pretty strong talk. I think I will stick with keeping it on my iPod for the next time I have to go out to Mineola.

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