Dave Brubeck was a white guy who knew rhythm like no one has ever known rhythm.
Son of a concert pianist and father of stunning jazz musicians, he died yesterday at age 91 -- the same age as my father. In a sense, Brubeck was my dad -- at least culturally. I saw him numerous times in concert, mostly in small venues. He was already an old guy back then in the late 1970s and '80s.
I never saw him with army buddy and genius sax player Paul Desmond. But somehow in my teens, their music became part of my life. They taught me things about harmonics and chords that I could never have learned any other way but listening to guys whom I respected.
In any case, jump to see five of their best.
Take Five. Wow.
Lover. Subtlety personified.
With BB King and Pat Metheny. Ethereal lunacy.
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Tribute to him at the White House.
Take the A Train. Everybody did this song, but not this well.