Auld Lang Syne – Chet Baker


Trumpet player and singer CHET BAKER died here on May 13th 1988. He will live on in his music for anyone willing to listen and feel.

We liepen van de Zeedijk naar het station. Het sneeuwde. We passeerden een plaquette aan een gevel. Ik las, liep verder, keerde om, las opnieuw.

Dus dit was de plek.

Ik herinner me nog goed het NOS-journaal uit 1988 waarop verteld werd dat jazztrompettist Chet Baker uit het raam gevallen was van een Amsterdams hotel.

Niet lang daarvoor had hij opgetreden in café De Kroeg. Het was nieuwjaarsnacht 1988. De VPRO interviewde hem en maakte televisie-opnames die achteraf de laatste bleken. Je zag een oude man die helemaal op was en toch niet kon stoppen met geven.

Cool jazz versus hot jazz

Cool jazz is much more subtle. It has to be listened to very carefully.


After forty years of playing… I mean… my ideas have changed, somewhat… basically not, but… I found out a lot more about my horn… and what I could do with it… than I was aware of in 1952.


Now it’s 1988… and I have all that experience… all those years of having played behind me… so it’s normal that I would change during that time… make some progress… I hope it’s progress…


…1987 continued to bring me a very wonderful gift, and that is that I got through it. Managed to survive. And of course I’ve had Diane with me all this year, and that was another gift that a man can really appreciate.


I just hope that ’88 will… it doesn’t have to get any better, if it just stays as good as ’87 that’ll be fine…

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