Sunday, June 8, 2008

When I fall

We're in the middle of a heat wave, and all the windows in the apartment are open, even though it's nearly 11pm. The music needs to match the density of this unseasonable air: so I'm listening to Lizz Wright equivocate beautifully, after telling her lover she wants to stay, "What if the water's cold / when I fall?" She's enmeshed in this textured Craig Street production that makes me think of the first modern jazz cd I ever bought, Cassandra Wilson's Blue Light 'Til Dawn, also produced by Street. I came across it in a mall in Columbus, Indiana, after my first year of college. I had no idea who Cassandra Wilson was, and it was impossible back then to listen to cds in the store before buying them; was it the cover photo of Wilson in rapture that did the trick? Lizz Wright's voice is warmer, a little less mannered than Wilson's, if also a little less supple. And I'm fifteen years older, thinking about the first lyric on Blue Light 'Til Dawn--"You don't know what love is / Until you learn the meaning of the blues"--and how I had no idea what love was then.