20
Jun
08

Kansas City – Original Soundtrack

You know who was my favorite badass?

Pablo Picasso.

Not only was he an amazing artist who created his own style, but he came up with one of the biggest pimp moves I’ve ever heard of.  Near the end of his life, when he was already internationally famous and nailing women who were a quarter of his age, he stopped using money to pay for things.

Pablo would head out shopping and just bring a sketch pad and some charcoal.  Everyone in his town knew who he was, so when he walked into a store he would simply pick out what he wanted and go to the manager, or cashier or whomever was in charge at the time and say something like:

“I could pay you for this in cash, but would you take a sketch instead?”

From what I’ve read, no one refused.  Why would they?  They’ll cover the guys groceries, and in return they get a signed original Picasso sketch that will someday be worth thousands of dollars.  Good deal! In fact, a lot of stores started requesting the sketches in lieu of payment.

Just imagine taking a girl on a date to an expensive restaurant, finishing a huge meal with lots of great wine and the restaurant manger comes to your table and asks if you could pay with a sketch.  The deal is pretty much sealed right there.

Another great historical pimp move came when Robert Altman made “Kansas City” in 1995.  If you’ve seen the film, I’m sure you’ll agree that the 1930’s era gangster film was mediocre at best.  Especially for an Altman film.  But what sets the film apart, was the music.

Altman was born in Kansas City and had a lifelong love of jazz, and while I can’t prove it, I wholeheartedly believe Altman made this film as a cover for making this album.

What a pimp.

Basically they recreated the Hey Hey Club, as it was in the 30’s.  They brought in the best sound guys in the business to mic the place correctly to get that authentic sound, and then they brought in the musicians.  Man did they bring em in!  You get a virtual who’s who of jazz in one room.  Guys like Joshua Redman, Geri Allen, Kevin Mahogany and Cyrus Chestnet all get their jam on in what can only be described as the most awesome way ever.  They also brought in an enthusiastic full audience, shouting out encouragement and cheers throughout the set.  Essentially this recording grabs the listener and tosses them back in time to a place that doesn’t exist anymore.

I don’t know of very many albums that succeed in doing this.

Filled with hits of the era from the likes of Count Basie (‘Blues in the Dark’) and Bennie Moten (‘Moten Swing’ as you will hear below), this is a must have for anyone who likes the swinging sound of Kansas City jazz.  Or just jazz in general.

It’s the pimp move.

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2 Responses to “Kansas City – Original Soundtrack”


  1. March 19, 2009 at 10:55 am

    This was a bomb soundtrack! The only problem is I lost it, better, I think a friend stole it when he moved out. And I need it, for my mixtape.

    Are you interested in participating/putting together a mixtape of your favorite instrumentals? Check my blog.

  2. March 19, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    I’ll take a look…I can probably rapid share ya a copy either way!


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