You know it's bad when you're going through your Sibelius scores folder and you come across fragments you don't remember writing. I discovered a rather long-winded overwritten melody I (apparently) concocted while in high school that I'd long forgotten. There's some promise in there, I think... but I don't remember its inspiration or context at all. Very strange.
I made a new run to the CD section of the Grande Bibliotheque again. The selections on this occasion:
Billy Preston: The Ultimate Collection. I knew various songs on this anthology, but not Billy's versions of them ("Will It Go Round In Circles?," "You Are So Beautiful"). His cover of "Blackbird" might be the best of them all.
Gil Evans: & Ten; The Individualism of Gil Evans. I heard some of these pieces when Christine Jensen did her Master's composition colloquium on Gil's music, but not the full records. Both records feature Steve Lacy, but Individualism features a host of fantastic bassists (PC, Gary Peacock, Ron, Richard Davis), a rotating reed section with Wayne Shorter, Eric Dolphy, and Phil Woods (among others), and Elvin Jones in a much different atmosphere than his usual 1964 surroundings.
Anthony Braxton Quartet (Dortmund) 1976. Haven't listened yet.
Art Ensemble of Chicago: A Jackson In Your House/Message to Our Folks. Interesting to hear how they function in their earliest incarnation without Don Moye, but I'm not impressed by it. The out-and-out racial politics of "Get In Line" (from Jackson) are supremely dated. Message to Our Folks fares better, with a rollicking take on "Dexterity."