Brecker is feeling better these days after a partial marrow transplant from his daughter. You can read more about that here. (on his MySpace page of all places!).
I was so happy to hear about his surprise appearance onstage at Carnegie Hall during the JVC Jazz Festival with Herbie! The last time I saw him live was on the 2nd Directions in Music tour with Herbie, Roy Hargrove, Terri Lynne, Scott Colley in Pittsburgh.
Brecker, thought his vibrato can drive me up walls, was a major source of inspiration to me as a saxophone player. Growing up and hearing the overtones he does on "Two Blocks From the Edge" totally changed how I looked at the possibilities on the saxophone. he man definitely got me through some rough shit in high school. Granted, there are like 3 or 4 people on Earth can touch Brecker technique-wise and those who read this blog know who at least one of those people is. I shouldn't have to say it.
But, man, only Brecker can do Brecker. He is so ridiculous and when he is in the groove with an adventurous rhythm section he can swing like a crazy M-F. JESUS! Listen to him play Oleo here way back in 1983 (the year I was born!):
For those of you wanting to see some newer rare Michael Brecker ish from before he got sick, here you go (I have no clue who that pianist is that they show on camera) but this is one of the definitive songs that changed my life:
If you didn't see it go pick up the June issue of JazzTimes at a library or music store or just purchase a pdf online (I have done so before) which ran a cover story of anecdotes from the jazz community on Michael Brecker and what he means to so many cats.
Ok. Going to bed thinking about how amazing Michael Brecker is. Thank God for Michael Brecker and we all continue to pray for his speedy recovery. Jews out there: Say a Mishebeirach for Michael Brecker if you are at a shul in the next few days or weeks! I wonder what Michael's Hebrew name is? Maybe someone can find that out and post it as a comment.