Music Monday: Two Singles

Jazz singles have always sort of baffled me. I mostly find them unsatisfying because I really enjoy the experience of listening to an album. Maybe this is because I feel very satisfied when an album works and songs flow into one another or react to one another across an entire disk (LP or whatever). More than that, most (but certainly not all jazz albums) feature a single group performing at a particular time and often showcase the range or character of a particular ensemble and moment. 

I suppose I also felt like jazz was one place where album preserved a certain amount of integrity (at least in the “LP” and post-LP era; I recognize, of course, that jazz music was released over a wide range of formats historically). 

Anyway, I offer two relatively recent jazz singles here that captured my attention. The first is tuba player Theon Cross’s version of Thelonious Monk’s “Epistrophy.” Cross is part of the remarkable London jazz scene and I first came across him playing with Sons of Kemet. His version of “Epistrophy” is pretty great and it definitely has made me enthusiastic for the release of his next album!

The other single that I’ve listened to this weekend is Miles Davis’s version of Tina Turner’s “What’s Love Got To Do With It.” I have a massive soft spot for Davis’s 1980s stuff (especially his version of Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time”), and even as I’ve tried to distance my listening from Miles Davis in general (for vaguely formed ethical reasons), his 1980s output continues to be a guilty pleasure. Apparently this single is a teaser for a release of “bootleg” material of his from the 1980s.

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