Monday, March 29, 2010
A Transforming Book
I have just finished reading Quincy Jones's Autobiograph. I was stunned. When I read about his relationship with his mother, Sarah, I had to just put the book down for a long time and think about how important family is.
When he talked about becoming a man and learning how to really love the women in his life and take care of his children I found myself again and again shaking my head and thinking, "he has got a lot to tell you, Joseph."
When he talked about his love of music and openness to all kinds of music, I found myself back in Houston in my grandmother's restaurant, Mary Lou's Cafe, in Houston, Texas in the forties... with rhythm and blues coming hot and heavy off the juke box, swing music mellowing out the neighborhood from the Everygreen Ballroom, and the Baptist Church two blocks away singing the Lord's praises every Sunday morning.
He talked about artists I love and his relationship to them: Dinah Washington, Count Basie, Theolonius Monk, Stevie Wonder, Billie Holliday, Dianna Ross, Tina Turner. I went to the index of the book and made sure I got the names of artists who, over the years, helped me to keep smiling, snapping my fingers, going deep into my own fears and tears, and choosing to live life courageously and deeply.
And I especially thank Q for getting me moving in my writing. Day and night he was working the melodies and the lyrics of so many wonderful songs. Right now I am thinking of the theme from the television show, Ironsides.
His autobiography is a great read....
This video sends chills of delight up and down my spine... get ready!!!!