RIP Leon Russell

As some people know, I like to pretend to play the piano sometimes. What I don’t think as many people know is that my mother came from a family of musicians. Her grandfather was a violin maker from Poland. Her uncle learned his father’s profession and also played violin in the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. The musical ability in our family is unevenly distributed, but those who have had it have tended towards classical music. My grandfather, however, was always the black sheep of the family. When he was young, he played drums with jazz bands. I’ve been told he was terrible and only performed if someone was sick. Still, his taste was eclectic and when he died I went through his record collection. One of the records was Carney, by Leon Russell.

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