Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Roots of Bobby McFerrin

IS there a more annoying song from the 1980s than "Don't Worry Be Happy"? Maybe -- a lot of bad childhood memories are now flowing back, some of them involving George Michael -- but not one of my favorite number from that low dishonest decade.

Debut LP
HERE is my brief LA Times exchange with the man who helped revolutionize jazz singing and has made an impact in the classical world as well. (He also did the right thing after George Herbert Walker Bush stole his song without permission, just as Reagan did with Springsteen's not-so-conservative "Born in the USA.")
Miles pic by Tom Palumbo

McFerrin, needless to say, is an interesting guy, and he lists his among his most important influences Miles "Prince of Darkness" Davis and the Christian savior. Now that's what I call a diverse roster.

McFerrin is at the Hollywood Bowl next week, by the way.

1 comment:

Matt G said...

Realizing I hated that song when so many others seemed to love it SO MUCH was definitely a musical awakening for me. I remember some kid playing it in my dorm and going on and on about how amazing it was that one guy was doing all the parts, and I was basically like: who cares? (I'd probably be less judgmental now that I'm slightly less insecure.)