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Horton Walker

Jazz, or Jas as it was first documented in New Orleans, was originally a euphemism for sexual connection, so to speak. If it wasn't, it was an outlier. Jelly Roll, Lemon, broadcaster- hundreds of words from the lexicon of Jazz have their origins in or refer to one aspect or another of that curious phenomenon of human life.

For a music that developed in brothels, many of its modern devotees seem to have taken a decided turn toward the philosophy of the Church Lady. Raising eyebrows?!? Shave 'Em Dry.


(Which, PS, you can learn more about here is any fellow Angelenos are interested: http://hbowl.com/Krall.)


Thank you for a very thoughtful post about this album cover. As a woman, I raised an eyebrow and followed it with a shrug: Duana is a grown up and power to her. Seems to be the consensus amongst us self-identifying women on here.

I work with the LA Phil...so excited to see her play at Hollywood Bowl with the Orchestra coming up.

Larry Blumenfeld

Without getting into a deep discussion about this photo, which I've seen and don't love, and its connected music, which I haven't yet heard, I will say this: Were the very same quote—about being a 'clean piece of canvas'—said by any number of male jazz musicians (say, Ambrose Akinmusire) I suspect it would have been taken as a statement of artistic openness.

Ron Hildebrand

Sorry, but Diana Krall's covers have nearly always emphasized sex appeal and sensuality--at least the last decade's worth or so have (not overtly, of course, but the particular dresses and poses have certainly had that subtext, with Mark Sigler being a master of subtlety in the tasteful handling of them all)--so what's the big deal about some not-very-erotic lingerie? Is someone afraid Diana's breaking new ground and perhaps using sex to sell music? Oh. My. God! NO!!!

Finally, not all that many of us at 47--men nor women--can look that good, so I really don't see the controversy here.

(And Redbeard Simmons--you have the comment of the day! :) )

Redbeard Simmons

Doesn't it make you nostalgic for Herbie Mann's "Push Push" LP cover? http://www.funnyalbumcovers.com/2008/12/odd-herbie-mann-push-push.html

John W. Comerford

Hello Nate, the moment I read your "Addendum" and the provided context, I got it. I believe the communication is a clever way of personalizing the representation of where DK is now with her artful expression. If the idea of returning to another time is burning or has been smoldering in her for some time, then as artists know, it will hopefully come on out and be articulated. What better way to approach that fantasy than with such talented collaborators in the visual scheme. The rub here though might be the very context is framed (literally) down so tight, that that if you don't recognize the period wardrobe or the red velvet column bench as being motifs from the 1920's -- you will focus on the skin and pose. To that end, and leave it to the corporate marketing mind to do this, they have framed out the importance of the context for the immediacy of the sale. So, in other words, dress a larger set with 1920's art direction and put a piano from that time in it and widen the frame and the viewer has context and cues with which to process the entirety of the artistic statement in a single glance. It could still achieve the desired marketing affect of titillation and the all important goal of middle-age female empowerment while flushing out the complete idea. Rather than the artist hoping that someone buys the CD to engage the liner notes or reads a journalist who is wise and talented enough to color in the whole picture. Looking forward to hearing how DK, TB and EC bring that time to life musically through their talents. Hoping for a complete communication that delivers a warm afterglow!


Americans are such prudes. In France the Krall outfit could pass for a tooth paste ad on TV.

Ron L

Did any of you ever see the cover of the Tijuana Brass album "Whipped Cream"? It shows up in every stack of used LPs I see. It's a good cover. It attracts attention. The only bad publicity is no publicity. And what do you expect in an age when most advertising is aimed at your gonads and not your brains anyway!


Diana Krall has been amazingly lucky in her career. She is a more than adequate singer, she swings and she does a good job on the piano. The sexy business she has followed for many of her albums goes along with the way a lot of the singers market themselves. No surprise here.My listeners like her.

Nancy "Jazz Spotlight On Sinatra" at www.live365.com/stations/nancyann3839

Dayla Arabella

As a woman, 'you go girl,' she's not a size 2 and she's not 22, but she looks great and is non-apologetic. As a publicist, it's a no-brainer, no different than getting a high profile divorce or entering rehab-perhaps just less painful. As a jazz fan, its sad that this is what we've come to, imagine Ella having to resort to this to stay relevant?

ken micallef

Ever since Tommy Lipuma and WBR fashioned Krall as a sax kitten singing Jobim (visions of Krall walking a lonely beach in lingerie), she's bought into this crap. It's embarrassing, and does anyone really think she can sing? She's the master of the baritone grumble.

Jim Eigo

S & M Jazz I hear it's the next big thing.

Rob Braden

Mark Seliger is one of the great photographers of out time. Love his work. Saw Diana Krall in a store in Manhattan shopping. She's looks amazing in real life too. Harry Connick jr from time to time does the male version of sexy in some of his imagery. Both play great piano and sing well. Somewhat retro for my taste though...

Nathan Moy

If anything, it is generating buzz. Offensive? Maybe. Good marketing? Sure.

Sarah Deming

hi nate! aesthetically and morally, this sucks almost as much as calling your album "bitches." xoxo sarah

mark shilansky

You know, the sexpot thing never really bothered me about Diana Krall. That is usually imposed upon her. She does her homework and plays some decent piano, studied with Ray Brown, knows a lot of tunes. I find her singing style completely jive and un-emotional, and actually hard to listen to as she has trouble singing long phrases, and even phonating sometimes... she uses this rasp all the time that is particularly ill-advised.

T-Bone Burnett has almost never made a bad record, though, nor has Elvis Costello (to me), so this musical partnership (T-Bone, Elvis, Diana) is interesting to me, in that perhaps finally she'll make some music that sounds authentic and deeply-felt.

Mark C.

Coincidentally, I purchased the new Taylor Swift single "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" today. I already got my $1.29's worth out of it. When is this blog going to start talking about jazz again?

Matt Merewitz

Sad. And strangely arousing at the same time. If I didn't know anything about music, I might buy it...

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