Top Six Favorite Miles

1. Miles Davis (jazz musician)

2. The nautical mile (unit of measure)

3. Miles, Joel Goodson’s pal (character in the 1983 film “Risky Business”)

4. Miles City (town in Montana, population 8,410)

5. Buddy Miles (jazz/R&B drummer, played with Jimi Hendrix)

6. Miles Standish (military officer at Plymouth colony, sailed on the Mayflower with my 14-generations-removed relative Edward Doty)

Top Six Rejected Titles for the Johnny Hodges 1958 Jazz Album “Not So Dukish”

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1. Why In The Hell Would You Say It Is Dukish

2. I Can’t Believe It’s Not Dukish

3. Guys, Check Out This Cigarette

4. Does This Tune Make My Ass Look Dukish

5. Totes Not Dukish

6. Dukish

The inimitable alto saxophone player Johnny Hodges played in Duke Ellington’s band from 1928-1970 (except for a hiatus from 1951-1955). His solo recordings were his chance to set himself apart from that tenure. Hence the title of this one, “Not So Dukish.”

Top Six Favorite Records Released In 2012

1. Emptyset – “Medium” Recorded in an abandoned, unfinished 19th century British mansion. Huge, oppresive, and delightful. Brings together my love of history, recording, and abstraction.

2. Oneohtrix Point Never – “Rifts” Five LPs of mind-melting synthesizer experimentation. This cat would have been at home with the Germans making this type of music in 1972. Hypnotic, texturally lush, and possibly self-indulgent (in the best way, of course.)

3. Andy Stott – “Luxury Problems” Mr. Stott keeps making music that sounds quite unlike anything else before it. Imagine if someone produced a Sade record under the influence of Bauhaus architecture and codeine. Unsettling and inviting at the same time. Time stands still when you play it.

4. Death Grips – “The Money Store” Parts of this record still scare the hell out of me. It’s so intense that I can only liken it to standing in front of a blast furnace. NSFW in a number of ways. Sonically and lyrically. These cats would have Lil’ Wayne weeping in the corner.

5. CAN – “Lost Tapes” Where do I turn when I wish to hear a man chant the lyric “Are you waiting for the streetcar” for ten minutes? This amazing set of outtakes and non-album cuts from these German giants of weird rock, of course.

6. Josh Berman and His Gang – “There Now” Mr. Berman helped me with a question about a Gerry Mulligan record at the Jazz Record Mart in 2011. In 2012, he released this thoughtful and exciting record of jazz music. It’s lighthearted at times, freely exploratory at others. Just what I needed, actually.

I even made a YouTube playlist with a track from each record.