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"Blue Alert- Anjani"

by Gary Peterson

BrooWaha San Francisco

April 21, 2007
A "Blue Alert" is a "trance of pure awareness in the presence of naked beauty." It is also "the warning light that flares between desire and despair," and "the alarm in your heart when you step out of a daydream into an actual erotic landscape."

This started when Anjani, a graduate of the Berkelee School of Music and a jazz pianist/back up singer who has performed with Field Commander Cohen since the "Various Positions World Tour" of 1984, sings on "The Future," "I'm Your Man," and "Dear Heather" and has two previous CDs of her own; noticed a Cohen poem called "Blue Alert" and asked "the grocer of despair" if she could borrow it.

A whole CD recorded by Ed Sanders on Analog Tape resulted after Anjani made a "jazzy" demo of "Blue Alert." Then she and Cohen combed through his notebooks, maybe his laundry lists, and books of poems and fragments of poems and even discarded one liners.

The results are to be heard on "Blue Alert," the CD - words by L. Cohen, music by Anjani. Her previous releases were a totally self-penned CD titled "Anjani" and another which is a mediation on the Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic words for God. Now we know where Mel Gibson, who produced Lian Lunson's "I'm Your Man" which some call "the greatest film ever made about music" may have gotten that Aramaic. Lunson, with or without Mel, does the honors here on the "Blue Alert" DVD and on the sensual, not approved by Dubya, video of "Thanks For The Dance."

"Thanks for the dance, I hear we are married,
Thanks for the dance, and the baby I carried,
One, two three, One, two, three,

This is a keeper. This is stunning. Long time Cohen producer/associate John Lissaur plays clarinet and saxophone on it. There's "Innermost Door," "Crazy To Love You," "Blue Alert," "Thanks For The Dance," and more.

Like the guy on the boob tube who guarantees your spiffy new suit, I guarantee you will never hear this more than once and experience the same recording, music, and words. Or Leonard Cohen, author of "Jazz Police" and "Hallelujah," who isn't even on the record. He produced it instead.

Play it; a lot.

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