Oregon Music News: Oregon’s all-genre music magazine since 2009


And now Mose Allison is dead.

By TOM D'ANTONI // A few words on loss.

There are many good excuses for having missed it, but Thursday, November 10 was the first anniversary of the death of Allen Toussaint. Death of course, is a constant but music lovers have been hit by a roaring freight train of death in the past year. I don't have to list them all. I don't want to list them all.

Today it's Mose Allison, at 89. This won't be a formal obit. Look at the New York Times for that. After sitting here in tears for six years, putting up obit after obit, when Allen died I said, "No more."

I had to write one for Lisa Lepine when she died in July, but I was breaking the news of her death..

Mose was the cool cat from Mississippi (and therefore authentic). But he had a unique attitude. It isn't hard to have a bad attitude, but Mose' was cut with optimism. His tune "Ever Since the World Ended" is a great example:

"Ever since the world ended, I don't go out as much. / People that I once befriended just don't bother to stay in touch. / Things that used to seem so splendid don't really matter today. It's just as well the world ended -- it wasn't working anyway."

 Since the presidential election, we have lost Leonard Cohen, Leon Russell, and now Mose. Folks are already in great despair over what appears to be an authoritarian future for the Republic and I'm one of them. A friend of mine wrote to me today and said, "A whole bunch of excellent people are going to take off. No reason to stick around. I'm guessing we'll lose anyone smart over 74 years of age. Mose Allison did not suffer fools gladly, so of course he took off."

 Listen to Mose sing "Gettin' There."  There ain't much to keep us from getting there. Here's a thread.

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Susie V Kaufman

Please feel free to delete this; I'm a bad communicator. What you wrote was so real. By the time I hit 10/11, and was filled with big band (plus folk, topical folk), classical/baroque, Italian opera, it was Mose Allison who got me deeply into bebop (still in both forms of jazz at 69), but roadied in rock). Mose was IT for me. My uncle road-managed Basie, Ellington, Thad Jones/Mel Lewis, so never lost that, either. You mentioned Leonard and Leon, near-lifelong other favorites, and I gratefully appreciate that. No one else could have/should have the way you did, within the political horror. But Mose, oh Mose... I'm out of control with my crying, and am so appreciative of your emotional words. [Worked with Dr. John, by the way, so loved Allen's mention, too.] Mose fits right in with my first-stage of denial that I'm not yet ready to dismiss. Thank you for saying it all JUST RIGHT. Damnit, I'm already missing Mose so bloody much. I'm kind of feeling the way your friend says others are feeling, and I no longer care or feel fear ABOUT feeling that way. I'm an atheist, so what the hell is left, anyway, yes? We are the lucky ones to have seen and heard Mose perform time and time again, aren't we? Much love to you for loving Mose. PEACE... somehow, then... you've given me some good strength.


Thank you. --- TVD

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