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He had the world on a string

He had the world on a stringBy ROSS PORTER

Frank Sinatra was a great singer (duh), but he was also insecure about his looks, thuggish and a misogynist.

The Voice
By James Kaplan
Doubleday, 786 pages, $40

For biographers, Frank Sinatra's life has been a literary bonanza. He was, simply stated, a very complicated man. A musical tsunami who sang with such unprecedented beauty, taste and ease that he helped to create a genre called the Great American Songbook. In complete contrast to his musical beauty, Sinatra behaved like a thug, kept mobsters as friends and was a misogynist.

Quincy Jones' long and restless song

Quincy Jones' long and restless songthe writes,

It had been a long night — a concert, a reunion with an old friend, a midnight meal — but as the clock ticked past 2 a.m. Quincy Jones sat in a rare state of silence in his estate at the very top of Bel-Air. The man they call Q nodded at the cellphone sitting on the kitchen counter.

"I've deleted 188 names this year — all the people who died, all these friends of mine," Jones said. "That's what happens when you're 77, man. That's life, man. You start out playing in bands and doing duets and then you worry that in the end it's all going to be a solo."

Death of Jazz Club Underscores a Changing Scene

Death of Jazz Club Underscores a Changing writes,

As another holiday season under a stagnating economy draws to a close, it is hardly surprising that San Francisco would lose that rarely profitable of ventures, a jazz room.

But Coda, a bar, restaurant and club in the Mission District, did not seem like it was going under. In just a year and a half, it had established itself as one of the most interesting jazz-based schedules in the Bay Area. Acts like the Jazz Mafia tapped into a vibrant younger music scene, and salsa Sunday bookings and Latin jazz nights sold out. Stevie Wonder dropped by for a set; Liz Phair covered Velvet Underground songs.


ImageMorley Safer has traveled the world for 60 MINUTES for years, but never with so much great music as in this jazz journey he takes with Wynton Marsalis and his Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. Safer and 60 MINUTES cameras follow Marsalis and company to London and Havana to capture what these musical ambassadors do best - bring jazz, America's most distinct art form, to people everywhere. Safer's story will be broadcast on 60 MINUTES, Sunday Jan. 2 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

Miles Davis 2011: A Look Ahead


Miles Davis Biopic: With a possible release date (according to IMDB) sitting comfortably on the 2013 calendar, it’s no surprise news is fleeting. It didn’t stop me from starting a blog about it in 2008! Boy was I early to the party.

Nevertheless, 2010 closed with an unexpected bang of news about the slow-moving biopic. The Hollywood Reporter’s Shirley Halperin caught up with Don Cheadle who said the script was complete and now they are on the hunt for investor money.

Most importantly, we now have some concrete hope that the project is moving ahead.

But 2011 is expected to be low-key, unless a studio jumps in to pay the tab and a start date is confirmed. Maybe an actor or two sign on, but I’m not hopeful for much action. A script leak would be welcome!

With Cheadle’s busy workload it’s tough to see where the biopic fits in – in the short-term. The Miles Davis Biopic isn’t even listed on his credits, which is strange.

We assume Cheadle is still going to direct the movie as well as play the lead role of the jazz legend. I’ve wondered if Cheadle should not direct and just focus on playing Miles Davis. But I’m on record in my confidence with Cheadle as star and director of the Miles Movie.

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