Monday, August 25, 2008

Music Monday--Herbie Hancock, "Maiden Voyage"

I had the TV on for a little while Friday night, and while flipping channels, I watched the opening moments of Michael Mann's Collateral. We first get to know the cab driver protagonist, played by Jamie Foxx, while he drives a young attorney (Jada Pinkett Smith) to her downtown office. It's a lovely, delicately underplayed scene; the low-key cabbie and the tensed-up lawyer find an easy rapport, and it has a detail that's stayed with me through the years since I first saw the film: the cabbie, when he's feeling stressed, looks at a postcard of a tiny tropical island and wishes himself there. I give myself those sorts of momentary mental vacations with music, and one of the best pieces for it is Herbie Hancock's "Maiden Voyage." When I hear Hancock's piano and George Coleman's Coltrane-style tenor sax, I close my eyes and remember the feel of the sea rolling by.

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