Wednesday, 7 December 2011


Training has a habit of stepping down a gear at this time of year. Not because of commitments or time constraints (though I suppose that can affect some folks training), but primarily because of the weather.
The weather might not exactly dictate what you do, but chances are it influences what you do.
Take yesterday. I was all set for my usual 7 mile run up by the majestic Clyde. However the weather had contrived to make the pathways as dangerous as possible. The snow from Tuesday night/Wednesday morning had melted slightly - only to freeze over again. It was treacherous underfoot.
So... I ended up tippity-toeing half a mile or so along to Glasgow Green and from there just running about the grassy areas hither and tither. I like running on grass that's got a sort of ice covering on it. Nice and crunchy underfoot. Till you hit one of those spots that's deceptively muddy underfoot!!
Quite a few other runners had the same idea and everyone seemed to be enjoying it. Noticed that while the weather didn't deter runners the ned count was way down (no bad thing). Including the tippy-toe run there and back to the office I still manged 4.5 miles.
The speed though was way down on my usual lunchtime run - it was perhaps natures way of getting me to take it easy.
And it was probably just as well I had an easy lunchtime run as last nights club run was yet another eyeballs out session (the more temperate climes to be found in the east are much more conducive to road running).

Then today it was the wind that affected my run. Went out for a 7 mile easy run, so I didn't mind too much when the wind slowed me down - I just let it. Keeping the heart rate steady was more important today than speed.
Not looking forward to tomorrow though (90mph winds forecast!).

Life on "planet jazz" is going through a bit of a slow down as well to be honest. I'm getting to that strange time of year where I don't want to buy/acquire anything too new in case Santa's already packed it away for me. And in a week or so I'll be dusting down my collection of festive grooves (which by the 25th I'll be fed up with and grateful for some new sounds no doubt).
However, being careful about what I get doesn't mean getting nothing (oh Lordy no).
Managed to get a copy of "Super Standard" by The Super Trio. Now, apparently this was/is/should be a Kenny Barron CD, but contractual difficulties meant that it couldn't be released under his name (hence the "Super Trio"). Think the contractual problems actually led to the album only having a short shelf life and its now been deleted by the label but, I believe, it can still be bought from one of these companies that buy the rights to music then burn CDs to demand (I got an out of print Courtney Pine CD that way.... only for it to be re-released a few years later).
Anyway... I like Kenny Barron. Have done since I heard him with Stan Getz in 1989. This is a collection of tried and tested standards all beautifully done, especially Duke Ellington's "Sunset and The Mockingbird" and also "Willow Weep For Me" where bassist Jay Leonhart uses the bow on the upright bass to great effect.
Mostly ballads, though there are a couple of more upbeat ones on here too ("Cherokee" for example) and a cover of Bud Powells "Cleopatra's Dream" that has a bit of a latin groove going on.
Beautiful ballads taken at a slow and easy pace - just the ticket for those times when your thinking of slowing down a bit yourself.

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