Monday, September 15, 2014

eden ahbez: Full Moon

You may not know eden ahbez’s name, but if you heard Nat King Cole’s recording of “Nature Boy,” you’ve heard one of his compositions. Considered to be the original “hippie,” ahbez believed that only “God” and “Infinity” should be the only words in the English language that are capitalized – and hence we use lower case letters in our reference to him.

Ahbez, who was the personification of “Nature Boy,” lived in the woods with his family. It is said that they camped just below the first “L” in the famous “Hollywood” sign in Los Angeles. They only ate fresh vegetables, fruits, and nuts. Since he had long hair, a beard, and wore a white robe and sandals before such appearances became common in the late 1960s, his persona was similar to the many artistic depictions of Jesus.

Although he wrote “Nature Boy” in the late 1940s, ahbez did not begin recording his own music until 1959. He recorded a number of singles and one album: “Eden’s Island: The Music of an Enchanted Isle.” Today’s selection, “Full Moon,” was featured in the TV show “Fargo.” “Full Moon” is reminiscent of the recordings of Martin Denny with the addition of beatnik poetry.

Not my normal fare, but interesting as a piece of recording history. Enjoy.

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