Tuesday, April 13, 2010

for charlie haden (10)

for charlie haden
(1937 --

o rambling boy, what drew u out of yr ohio
folk & country roots to translate yr lyrical bass
runs into the physical/mental extensions of
yr own logic musically expressed in a spare
unison group or solo context? was it the mild
brush with polio that ended yr singing career?
or maybe it was l.a.’s nasty drinking water?
nevertheless in ’59 u mainlined coleman’s
harmolodics, got hooked on potent passages of
collective improvisation; became one with yr
instrument, bent yr will to its will, & made even
mingus name u “bass” as u walked in time, ran free of
time & turned a stagnating idiom inside out.

©Joseph McNair;2010


  1. For Charlie haden

    I believe this poem express a man becomeing one with what he loves to do. He doesnt fear what other people tell him, everyone has their doubts and belifes about where they are headed and what they will do in life. But instead of worrying all the time, the begin to live life. Which is what the speaker is talking about, as he becomes one with his instrument the rest of his worries don't seem to matter anymore, and he continues doing what he loves.

  2. The Polio really destroyed him as a child superstar, but nothing would take away his ambition in continuing to pursue his dream. It seems as if you're criticizing a little on his childhood, but honestly he became a wonderful bass player and substituted his vocals for intruments.