Expect plenty of winter and holiday songs on "Idiot's Delight"® at 8 which airs on this eve of the Winter Solstice, marking the shortest period of daylight and the longest period of night on Sunday. Vin Scelsa hopes that this last edition of "Idiot's Delight,"® before Christmas (and during Chanukah) offers a good soundtrack to wrap gifts, bake cookies, fry latkes and drape tinsel by! Also, he'll have a non-seasonal selection with songs from the new Cracker album, Berkeley To Bakersfield, and an "Idiot's Delight"® tangent inspired by a reference to the old song "Redwing" in Over The Rhine's song "Blood Oranges In The Snow," found on their album of the same name.
Vin Scelsa celebrated his birthday yesterday, December 12, so tonight's "Idiot's Delight"® at 8 focuses a little on the pleasure and pain of finding himself one year older. For the festive occasion, Vin will play—yes, play—his recently refurbished 1955 Buffet Crampon clarinet that he's owned since the tender age of eight. In addition, he's lined up some clarinet masters like Benny Goodman and Sidney Bechet. Vin also has some wintry songs from Sufjan Stevens, Over the Rhine and ice hockey fan Jane Siberry.
Vin Scelsa finds himself on a winding path on tonight's "Idiot's Delight"® at 8, an unpaved road strewn with tangential asides and deeper meditations. As his guides, Vin will bring along the passionate voices of Stevie Wonder, Annie Lennox and Joe South. He might even howl at the moon with Fiona Apple (pictured) or await December's first snowfall with Sufjan Stevens and Over The Rhine. Wherever Vin might go tonight on "Idiot's Delight,"® you know it's a journey you'll want to be on too.
My wife Freddie and I were sitting over coffee and the New York Times one morning earlier this week, bemoaning the racial and cultural strife in contemporary America, the ugly non-productive political divide, the seemingly "endless" war, etc. when we both simultaneously said aloud, "It's just like being back in the 1960s." And I thought of the Incredible String Band song with the lyric "I was a young man, back in the 1960s," and decided to use that as the "theme" for this Thanksgiving weekend edition of "Idiot's Delight"® tonight at 8.
I thought, let me play only some of my favorite music from that decade. I rarely do this sort of show, where the entire two hours is given over to single topic or one particular musical genre or era. I hope you enjoy tonight's unique departure from form and I extend my wishes to all dear listeners for a peaceful Thanksgiving weekend.
Might Neil Diamond and Neil Young be separated at birth? One Neil loves sequined blazers while the other prefers flannel shirts (guess which one). However, both Neils have grand new albums just released and tonight on "Idiot's Delight"® at 8, I'll explore both releases. In addition, there seems to be a lot of talented women singing the theme songs for high quality television series; enough for an entire set. I'll also have a musical remembrance for John F. Kennedy on the 51st anniversary of his death and honor the great Mike Nichols via his brilliant improvisational work with Elaine May.