Tag Archives: Jazz Noir

Sunday Sleep In ~ “Wine Dark Lullaby” ~ Neil Ardley/Ian Carr/Don Rendell

This whole album was an absolute stunning British Jazz work of art.

Pianist Neil Ardley directed the first half with an entire orchestra of musicians, a total of six songs.

Saxophonist Don Rendell played on three tracks of the albums 13 …. but when it came to this particular number with my love for Noir it was Ian Carr’s composition that infused the inner core of my brain.

A seducing walk down a dark alley or street either following or being followed not knowing the conclusion, but hoping it ends in the arms of a lover…. Brian Smith’s sexy sax takes it even further… of course you’d have to add a little drizzle or at least some mist.

I have no idea if Wine Dark Lullaby was ever used in any film noir considering it was released in 1970 and not its hey day of the 40’s and 50’s but man did it capture that era and mood. But many fit the bill and followed over the years… and if not somebody completely missed the boat here. This song as a theme or for just a scene would be to perfection.

From the album Greek Variations & Other Aegean Exercises…

… make it any fantasy you want.


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Sunday Sleep In ~ “Sweet Sorrow” ~ Joshua Redman Quartet.

Joshua Redman Quartet_Mood Swing


More like Sunday “Sass”…what a great piece of composing here by Redman that would befittingly seep into any film noir, sounding here right out of the 40s and 50s. Makes you want to write a script.

Certainly slips right into the album’s title – “Mood Swing” released in 1994 with a line up of players musicians dream of.


Joshua Redman
Tenor Saxophone

Brad Mehldau

Christian McBride


Brian Blade

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Sunday Sleep In ~ “Chinatown” ~ Nicholas Payton.

Film Noir

I have listened to this love theme at times up to 50 in a row in one sitting, I kid you not. Can anybody really play it like the original trumpeter who played in the film score, Uan Rasey? Simply No.

Rasey was the best there was yet his name seemed to sit in the shadows of the movie houses where we watched and heard it in. This mans trumpet would be heard in countless scores throughout Hollywood cinema history.

I’ve heard Terrance Blanchard’s rendition multiple times but I still always came back to Nicholas Payton’s.

He just seems to capture this atmospheric mood that composer Jerry Goldsmith wrote better than anyone else other than Rasey. From the very matching opening to the end, I love the brush drums throughout. What a piece of magic.

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