Week 47: “John Boy” by Brad Mehldau

In many parts of the world, this is a moody time of year weather-wise. Where I live, the past two weeks have seen snow, sun, rain, wind, and occasional moments of spring perfection.

The changeable weather at this time of year can make for some tricky fashion decisions. Do you wear that heavy coat and risk sweating like a pig in a blanket? Do you bring an umbrella and risk having to pretend that you brought it for protection from the sun?

As frustrating as it can be, I love this time of year. There’s nothing more wonderful than a warm day in late March, or a sudden break in the clouds in early April. The contrast makes spring’s beautiful moments even more beautiful.

With that in mind, I’d like to introduce you to “John Boy” by jazz pianist Brad Mehldau. With moments of beauty and moments of dissonance, it’s my new Official Song of Spring.

What makes this a beautiful song:

1. Nervous percussion. Quiet but persistent, is sounds a bit like someone anxiously drumming their fingers.

2. Moody piano. It creeps up in a major key, then turns minor.

3. Schizophrenic horns. Sometimes they complement the piano, other times they barge in uninvited like that dorky relative who tries to get his head in every photo at family gatherings.

Recommended listening activity:

Hanging your clothes out on the line instead of using the dryer.

Buy it here.