Archive for August 25th, 2012

A friend posted one of my favorite songs online a few weeks back, the Nat King Cole version of  Irving Berlin‘s classic What’ll I Do.  As with just about anything Nat King Cole performed,  it’s a great rendition of the song.  I have heard numerous versions of this song  as it has been recorded by hundreds of artists since Berlin wrote it in 1923 and, for the most part, they’re all wonderful- a tribute to Berlin’s skill as a songwriter.  But I wanted to hear one that I hadn’t come across yet .

I found a version from the  great  Chet Baker, the late Jazz musician who  I mentioned briefly in a post earlier this year.  I find him a fascinating subject.  His story is tragic and the images of  his physical change through the years from the ravages of drugs and violence are heartbreaking.  As a young lion of the jazz scene, he was truly the Golden Boy, strikingly handsome and hugely talented, and you can see life beat him down in the photos over time.  There’s a worn down sadness in his being that makes a perfect match for the melancholy tones of a song like this.

Give a listen on a slow and quiet Saturday morning…

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