As noted in this past weekend’s Indexing, I read through Philip Larkin’s collected jazz reviews, All What Jazz, and liked it quite a bit. After finishing up I immediately started searching out a few of the songs he talked of throughout the book, then realized there had to be some sort of one-stop playlist or boxset I could just check out if I wanted to hear the music Larkin had written about. After all, there are plenty of those sorts of CDs and MP3 playlists full of jazz that Woody Allen loves and ragtime that R. Crumb favors.
The good news is that there is such a compilation filled with Duke Ellington and Bessie Smith tunes culled from Larkin’s collection. The bad news is I’d really rather just track down all those songs on Spotify. Sadly, Larkin’s Jazz isn’t available on my favorite free music site (yet), but my search did yield some very favorable results in the form of Larkin, Kingsley Amis and other folks reading poetry on Folkways Records 1967 third installment of the Anthology of 20th Century English Poetry.