Rafi Zabor’s Updoc, Fri 4/15 & Tues 4/19

Sonny

Yes, it’s another Sonny Rollins love-fest here on Updoc—8PM Friday and noon next Tuesday, Live at the Five Spot time. At the drop of a hat, or rather the release of Road Shows Vol. 4, I couldn’t resist devoting another two full hours to this unequalled bringer of joy to those of us who love this music. So, four songs from the new compilation, three of them probable classics and the fourth, well, also a probable classic, and for a middle act two tracts of retrospective from earlier decades. As for the new release of live recordings, Mr. Rollins said that he tried to choose performances that didn’t make him want to shoot himself. We hope he succeeded, and that one of these days he will get it right. Which brings us to the fresh joy of the news that he’s going to try to play again. It’s been a semi-open secret for a few years that the saxophone colossus was having trouble with his wind, probably due to his exposure, at his downtown studio, to the fumes and debris of 9/11—he was close to it, stuck indoors, with shut but not sealed windows, and being who he was he did a lot of playing, which may not have helped. Now he’s expressed a willingness to try some medication that may help put him back in playing condition, and this man, who could not be more loved by those who know his music, and therefore to some degree know him, can only wish Sonny Rollins the very best luck and healing and a return if he can manage it. He wants to play again and we all want to hear it, whenever this living national treasure feels ready.

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