Thursday, January 1, 2009
today i watched a music/interview show hosted by elvis costello. today's guest musician was elton john. now the reason this is of any importance to me and therefore to all of you is that elton john is a rabid laura nyro fan. according to elton...since the late 1960's when nyro began her career as a professional.
so why is all of this so personal to me? well, for at least 2 reasons:
1. moms played nyro all the time and though i was very young, i still remember the songs. she probably played nyro when she was pregnant with me so therefore i was aware of nyro before my actual birth.
2. because my uncle is moms brother, he too was/is a laura nyro fan and since he raised me once the 'rents were gone, i continued to be immersed in nyro's music until now i am a big fan of hers.
so sir elton went on about nyro for about 15 minutes, playing snippets of her music, rhapsodizing about how important she was to many current musicians and generally being a fan. i love him for this. elton is a music fan as well as a musician and has no problem talking up someone other than himself.
nyro is not for everyone obviously and her musical output stopped in 1997 when she died of ovarian cancer: so her career spanned a mere 10 years.
ahhh, but what music! personal, dramatic, complex, musically mature and complicated but always accessible if you are open to it. she was never a star though much of her work was recorded and made into hits by others.
laura is a family thing to me as in she is like a part of my family and when i listen to her i can't help but think of my beautiful moms: her hair falling in her face washing dishes or doing laundry or some such household chore (i really can't be sure as i was very very young)or sitting on this big green chair, singing the lyrics to herself, reading, thinking, being.
the vid above is a recording of laura doing a very old song accompanied by patty labelle: a very simple, direct song...in many ways like her own work and in many ways not like her own work. you tube has a decent array of her stuff. check it out.