Farewell Dave Brubeck


In 1980-something, I was a nerdy jazz enthusiast. I had an opportunity to attend the Playboy Jazz Festival and there got to meet the pre-eminent nerdy jazz man for the ages, Dave Brubeck. Dave was extremely kind and thoughtful to awkward teenage me and he has since always had a warm spot in my heart.

I’ve seen him play a few times since but never spoken with him again. Indeed, Dave seemed so immortal that it never occurred to me that he may one day leave us. Alas, today he did.

If you’re not familiar with Dave Brubeck, I recommend going and buying the Time Out album right now. This album is one of the definitive cool jazz albums. The whole album is done in odd time signatures. Blue Rondo a la Turk (my favorite) is in 9/8. That’s right. 1-2 1-2 1-2 1-2-3. Take Five is another classic and considered by some to be the best jazz song ever recorded. (That one is in 5/4. 1-2-3 1-2)

Dave will be missed but people will be unsuccessfully trying to tap their feet to his music long after anyone remembers any of us. Farewell Dave.