Duke Ellington - The Star-Crossed Lovers
“The piano trio finished an original blues number and began the intro to ‘Star-Crossed Lovers.’ When I was in the bar, the pianist would often strike up that ballad, knowing it was a favorite of mine. It wasn’t one of Ellington’s bestknown tunes, and I had no particular memories associated with it; just happened to hear it once, and it struck some chord within me. From college to those bleak textbookcompany years, come evening I’d listen to the Such Sweet Thunder album, the ‘Star-Crossed Lovers’ track over and over. Johnny Hodges had this sensitive and elegant solo on it. Whenever I heard that languid, beautiful melody, those days came back to me. It wasn’t what I’d characterize as a happy part of my life, living as I was, a balled-up mass of unfulfilled desires. I was much younger, much hungrier, much more alone. But I was myself, pared down to the essentials. I could feel each single note of music, each line I read, seep down deep inside me. My nerves were sharp as a blade, my eyes shining with a piercing light. And every time I heard that music, I recalled my eyes then, glaring back at me from a mirror.”
— Haruki Murakami - South of the Border, West of the Sun
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