05 September 2008

Friday Album Cover: Channel Three

Greg Osby
Channel Three

Greg Osby's 2005 Blue Note album Channel Three does not fit the Blue Note archetype (discussed earlier) at all. Other than the simple typography listing the artist and album title, there is almost no resemblance to the classic Reid Miles covers of the 1950s and 1960s. In many ways it is an anti-Blue Note cover: the cover is superimposed onto a vintage television screen, giving it a mixed-media feel. Additionally the image on the screen is really two images superimposed to resemble a busted television screen. There is also no hue to the black-and-white photo, which is a rarity for Blue Note covers.

Even so, the cover is in some ways a perfect fit for the album. Osby is playing in a pianoless trio (with drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts and bassist Matt Brewer), and plays the kind of dark, pensive music often associated with the romantic image of the jazz musician as a singular, contemplative individual (Think Sonny Rollins woodshedding on the Williamsburg bridge circa 1959). Osby is playing the type of music that makes you think of quiet, late nights alone with one's thoughts. Similarly, the dark image of a saxophonist on a tv with a broken picture, to me, conjures up a similar, somewhat desolate image of someone alone with his own thoughts.

No comments: