When you feel embraced and uplifted by a harmonious existence, you know it, perhaps because it happens all too rarely. Readers will have their own remembered experiences, but for perhaps four years I could be certain of being transported to another, delicate yet solid plane of consciousness: when Connie Jones began to play. He’s retired from playing, but the music he created is like a light in the darkness.
I saw Connie almost exclusively in the company of Tim Laughlin, who understood Connie’s irreplaceable majesties, and played wonderfully because of that inspiration. I’ve been saving some video performances — not quite for my old age, but for a time when we might well need infusions of beauty. So here are eight more performances: savor them gently and slowly. The splendid band (all of them happily active) is Doug Finke, trombone; Chris Dawson, piano; Marty Eggers, string bass; Katie Cavera, guitar; Hal Smith, drums — performing at the San Diego Jazz Fest on November 30, 2014. (By the way, that Fest is still perking along nicely: I’ll be there this Thanksgiving.)
MY GAL SAL:
YOU CAN’T LOSE A BROKEN HEART:
THAT OLD FEELING:
LINGER AWHILE (a different set):
A HUNDRED YEARS FROM TODAY:
SOMEBODY STOLE MY GAL:
Connie and friends bless us, so consider returning the compliment.
May your happiness increase!