It’s Only a Paper Moon: I listened to the 1961 Frank Sinatra version with the Nelson Riddle Orchestra. Phoniness. “It’s a Barnum and Bailey world.” Phoniness was a Big Concept back in the 50’s. The world is still “just as phony as it can be” but we’ve become inured to it these days.
Janacek’s Sinfonietta: Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Karel Ancerl. Murakami writes that this is perhaps “not ideal music to hear in a taxi caught in traffic”. Oddly enough, the first movement (Allegro) belies that thought. Brass, brass, and more brass. Riding in the taxi, Aomame gives the brief history of the work.
Billy Jean, Michael Jackson (Thriller): Not a MJ fan in the least, but this is one of the few songs I can listen to and nod my head. It’s nothing if not catchy. “I am the one”, as Aomame slips over a locked gate. of an emergency expressway exit.
Bach: The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I, BWV 846-853: Glenn Gould of course. It’s always surprising how familiar these are and how new sounding each time. Like mathematical sequences.
In a Akasaka hotel bar. Sweet Lorraine, The Nat King Cole Trio. Just found joy. It’s Only A Paper Moon (see above)