By Diaa Bekheet
I remember the first time I listened to Dave Brubeck‘s Take Five. It was1986 when a friend invited me to her birthday at a Cairo club. The minute I walked in, the recording of Dave Brubeck’s piano prompted me to whistle and move my body to the tune.
Just a few months after its release in 1959, Take Five became the best-selling jazz single of all time. It was written by saxophone player Paul Desmond, who was a member of Brubeck’s quartet.
When Brubeck died last week, on December 5, just one day before his 92nd birthday, Take Five was the most played piece of music all over the news worldwide. In the Middle East the song was frequently requested by listeners there.
Recently, a Pakistani Muslim Orchestra used Western and Eastern instruments to play Take Five as a tribute to Dave Brubeck.
The song is part of the orchestra’s album, Sachal Jazz: Interpretations of Jazz Standards & Bossa Nova, which blends jazz standards, bossa nova, and indo-Pakistan music.
Last month I was scheduled to interview Dave Brubeck, but he couldn’t do it because of his scheduled medical tests. I talked with his producer, manager and arranger, Russell Gloyd, who told me that even in the month before he died, Brubeck “does practice almost every day, and it’s amazing to hear him practice because I’m hearing tunes I’ve never heard in my life.” So Dave Brubeck –this jazz legend and international icon — was composing right to the end. (mp3 here)
Dave Brubeck has died but his music will live for years and years to come.
The music of Dave Brubeck: