Chet Baker: Live at Pub Le Dreher (Paris, France 1980)

February 29, 1980, captured live at Pub Le Dreher — Rue Saint-Denis, Paris, France. Flanked by Maurizio Gianmarco (tenor sax), Dennis Luxion (piano), Ricardo del Fra (bass) and Donny Donable (drums), the near 45 minute set finds the 51 year old Baker in healthy form as he leads the quintet through five tunes including a vocal via the John Klenner and Sam M. Lewis penned “Just Friends”. Sublime.

Videodrome :: Let’s Get Lost (1988)

Rather than characterize Baker as the trumpet-wielding James Dean or a playboy jazz rebel, Weber shows Baker for who he was: a deeply flawed man, with bruises and blemishes and all. The contrast between Baker’s personality and musicality makes Weber’s profile of Baker that much more heartbreaking. How could someone of so few words be so lyrical and poignant in their musicianship? How could someone who lived so crudely play so gently and sing so sweetly?