Music is nature's language. What it is telling you is to shut up for once and listen.


I don’t like Joe pass. I love Joe pass. I don’t like Joe pass. He is so boring. He is a genius.



You cant sell news stories that have data and cautious predictions. Where is the panic? Where is the impending doom? C'mon people , give me something to work with here…

    Opinions / Science / Theory of Relative Ignorance  

..and as I was a yuppy marketing and advertising executive for the better part
of a decade, I am not really impressed with stories of selling your soul to the devil...

    Art & Culture / Music / Blues / Robert Johnson  

Joe Pass - That too shall pass

I don’t like Joe pass. I love Joe pass. I don’t like Joe pass. He is so boring. He is a genius. It's all so framed and expectable. Look what amazing things he does with simple structures. The tone of his guitar is annoying. Listen to that clever melody line. He looks like an accountant and I am not sure he is alive. Look how those fingers run with the minimum of effort, like floating.

If you are confused, I once again did my job well. This is how I feel. and how I felt for the last two decades.


I don’t know what changes, maybe the weather, maybe my diet, but I am always torn between admiring Joe pass and looking up to him and a sense of "eh. Could take it or leave it."

He is systematic and predictable. The chord structure, the sound, the melodies and the walking thumb lines.
And yet…. He IS a genius. A genius that chose a style that doesn’t really "do" it to me.

it is sad but it is true. I appreciate his masterful technique, his compositions , the colors he manages to weave into the lines and all that.
I just wish he had some balls.
All that said, let's see why I do like him when I do. What is it that makes me turn my head to the side, like an attentive dog trying to understand what was said.

First, it is the feeling, or apparent lack of. There is something very controlled and kept back in his style of playing, always doing  chord calculations, planning lines, nothing left to chance, nothing gushing out of the parameters and the wired fence, but then again, sometimes, just sometimes you can get a glimpse of that beast in the cage, you hear a bull puffing restlessly under a diminished chord change, you can feel energy trying to break free.
And for that restraint, I give him credit.
taming beasts is a noble profession.


Personally I would let it have a bit more slack, a longer leash, but I guess pass will pass on my suggestion. He is a 'good boy' after all. I can't really blame him for that.

Although I do admire his solo work ( I am trying to be polite here... Maybe because he looks like a combination of a policeman in a 70's TV series and my high school chemistry teacher) I do find him much more tolerable when part of  a trio or quartet. Like this wonderful example. The presence of others even manages to make him sound more secure with himself, more daring, willing to go and do things he doesn’t do on his own. And then you can really see him shine.

and of course… the duets with Ella Fitzgerald.
Need I say more. Like there is anything with Ella Fitzgerald that is not pure genius…
this is one of my favorites. Again , the participation of Ella seems to give him a stronger base to play on, and his genius moves suddenly find a cozy home and a welcoming voice to create magic with.

He can be at times a bit boring to my taste, needs some support to shine, and maybe not my favorite player in the league, but In the end of the day? a world with Joe pass Is much better than a world without Joe pass.
And anyone Ella is willing to play with is automatically ok in MY book.


Baby ain't i good to you
Paco de lucia -
Blues in G-
Just friends -
Stormy weather -