Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The System(s)

This happened a week ago, but I think it deserves a mention here to round it out:  Ethan Iverson, pianist of the Bad Plus, added me to his blogroll, which was a a nice surprise.  Mr. Iverson first linked me on his blog back in September to refer to a post I wrote on Japanese pianist Masabumi Kikuchi.  I was surprised about that, too, so I wrote a sort of glowing, thankful essay about it here.  That essay was called "The System"--I was referring to the blogosphere, how you need to keep linking and posting and commenting to get some notice.  I mentioned a lot of people in that essay whom I had met through my blog, making a case for online connections. 

But it had a sort of meta feel to it, because in that Masabumi Kikuchi post--in which, after seeing Mr. Kikuchi play at the Village Vanguard, I praised him for his refreshingly bizarre approach to the piano--I also mentioned Mr. Iverson.  He was sitting at the table next to me that night at the Vanguard. 

About a month ago, I commented on Mr. Iverson's blog, asking about Mr. Kikuchi.  He responded:  "Matthew, I was so amused when I searched for Masabumi and found your description of me lurking behind him and taking notes."  I hadn't considered his view of it before, but it really must have been quite funny to find what I wrote:  "[Ethan Iverson] was there, sitting at the table behind the piano, staring with stolid curiosity, the night I first encountered Mr. Kikuchi."

I never thought Masabumi Kikuchi would bring me closer to jazz, but I never think a lot of things.  I should probably be aware of that.  In a week or so, the Bad Plus will be performing for about a week-long run at the Village Vanguard.  I'll be there on the twenty-eighth, and I hope to introduce myself to Mr. Iverson.  Maybe after that I'll start calling him Ethan in my posts(?).

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