Does Your House Have Lions?

"One day in the late sixties, I was on the phone with Rahsaan and mentioned to him that just that day I bought a house.
He responded by asking, "Does your house have lions?"
I said, "What?"
He said, "Lions, you know like in front of a museum or the post office. You know, concrete lions. My house has lions. Get a house with lions."

--Joel Dorn

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Winner announcement for Rahsaan poster giveaway!

My husband, Chuck, just drew Derek's name from the hat.  So congratulations and bright moments to Derek in Dublin!  Please send me your mailing address to:


Sunday, July 31, 2011

Poster giveaway

In honor of Rahsaan's 76th birthday, I'll be giving away this commemorative poster:

 To enter, just visit the blog between now and next Sunday and leave a comment on any post with your name and email address.  On Rah's birthday, August 7th, I'll draw a name out of the hat to pick the lucky winner.  This poster was created by screen print artist JD Fanning of the Bearded Lady and is signed and numbered.
You can enter as many times as you want.  And I promise, I'm not clever enough to do anything crazy with your email.)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Geoff Dyer on Rahsaan

"Kirk was like an encyclopedia of black music:  he stored all this knowledge not in his head but in his body, not as knowledge but as feeling.  He had all but abolished thought and raised feeling to the level of active intelligence."  from But Beautiful, 1996 (North Point Press).

Thursday, June 16, 2011

My favorite picture of Rahsaan

I love this picture of Rahsaan.  The top hat, the ring, and especially the pipe.  In addition to his massive instrument and record collections, he also had a fabulous pipe collection.  One of the first things that his producer, Joel Dorn, told me was that even though people thought of Rahsaan as an "out-there" jazz musician, he was really this down-home, Midwestern guy.  He loved to have his friends over for backyard bbqs, he loved listening to football games, and he loved his 200-plus pipe collection.
As Steve Turre, his bandmate & friend said, "He and my dad used to both smoke pipes so they would have conversations about pipe tobacco.  Rahsaan could relate to people on a lot of different levels."

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Rahsaan on Jay Leno last night

During Tracy Morgan's appearance on Jay Leno last night, Jay told a funny story about how he used to open for Rahsaan. It's about 26 min. into the show:

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno - Monday, April 4, 2011 - Video -

Friday, April 1, 2011

Rahsaan quote about blindness

"I'm a man, first.  So-called blindness is secondary.  I don't believe that when I pick up an instrument, I'm blind to anyone."

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Rahsaan Roland Kirk at the Zoo

"Rahsaan was talking to the lions and the lions were answering back."
                               --Ademola Johnson, Rahsaan's friend in London

Monday, March 21, 2011

Jimi Hendrix quote about Rahsaan

"I like things from Bach to Roland Kirk.  He hasn't even started yet, Roland Kirk....When you hear it, you can hear so much for the future, too.  I mean not necessarily by notes but you can hear it by feelings."

--Jimi Hendrix, NYC, 1968

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I want to know...

What was the song that turned you on to Rahsaan?  For me, it was "The Inflated Tear".  What was it for you?