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Top 5 Best Sunday Morning Jazz (y) Tracks

The perfect soundtrack to your morning can more often than not set the ideal tones for the day ahead.

Finding the balance between rising to greet the day, sitting down with your coffee after breakfast, and getting on with the days tasks can be tricky.

But it’s a fun challenge to meet musically and if your picks are just right you’re almost guaranteed a great day.

Here are some jazz song choices that correspond with the rising sun and a new day. Enjoy!

Blue In Green – Miles Davis

Blue In Green - Miles Davis

There’s no trumpet sound more recognizable than Miles Davis playing with a mute.

This is the perfect open your eyes track. Warm and velvety yet persistent and powerful.

Blue in Green is the 3rd track from the best-selling jazz album of all time, Kind Of Blue. It’s a 10 bar repeated cycle that winds itself into your consciousness and leads perfectly to a long, full-body stretch without ever really resolving anywhere, almost canon-like.

After the melody is played, soloist Bill Evans, who takes the changes at double time, adds a sense of urgency and motion. Coltrane’s usual ballad mastery is in evidence here as he finds an uplifting melodic path through the chords. Miles comes back in for several choruses, followed by piano, bowed bass, and a final cymbal ping.

A huge part of these recordings is the sound of the studio. Recorded at Columbia Studio in NYC in two days, the sound of the room plays in the vibe.

You can feel the wire brushes on the snare drum, vibrate to the acoustic bass foundation, and hear inside the bell of Miles’ trumpet.

A long way from the sterile world of the computer recordings of today.

Listen to it here.

Aguas de Marco – Ellis Regina

Aguas de Marco Elis Regina

Aguas de Marco, written in 1972 by Tom Jobim, it has lyrics in both Portuguese and English, where it’s known as The Waters Of March. In 2001 200 Brazilian music journalists voted it as the greatest Brazilian song of all time.

A circular bossa nova, the soothing delivery,the motion, the lyrics, the chords, the piano, the cycle, the song, on and on. Like the lyrics themselves, the song is more a moving film pastiche of images that speak of the water-like motion of life than a narrative tale. A Stick, a stone

Elis Regina IS the bossa nova. A tragic life cut short by substance abuse, more than 15,000 mourners gathered for her funeral in 1982. Happily, she left a vast library of recordings, audio and video to celebrate her life and her music forever.

May your day flow smoothly like the current on a perfect, pleasant day.

Listen to it here.

Three Little Birds – Gilberto Gil

Three Little Birds Gilberto Gil

The Marley song catalog needs no eloquent or witty introduction.

But this track recorded as part of a collection  by Brazil’s Gilberto Gil is a Sunday morning winner. While not a jazz standard or swing version, the intricate guitar arrangement lets me slip this one over the “jazz” line..

Try to be angry or anxious with this playing in the background..and if at first that doesn’t do it, turn up the volume. Don’t worry, about a thing, every little thing gonna be alright.  

Gilberto Gil is a Brazilian singer songwriter. He served as Minister of Culture from 2003 to 2008. He’s a political activist. His early collaborations with Caetano Veloso and Gail Costa showcased their vibrant original musical style.

But here he takes on Bob Marley and makes it just personal enough to fit perfectly into his vocabulary.

Look out your window, can you see 3 birds?

Listen to them sing. It’s a great way to meditate on the day ahead.

Listen to it here.

James – Pat Metheny

pat metheny offramp

This uplifting happy tune was released on the Pat Metheney record Offramp in 1982. This is get up and at ‘em music but still mellow enough to let you ease into things smoothly. 

Pat is one of modern jazz’s  all stars and in the music circles, that is earned status. This track is the first real recorded voice that brought his ensemble world success.

The signature synths and sonic palette that would become his early trademark. Of course, Pat has developed so many voices in his 50 years of recording that we could write a Pat Metheny top 200 list and still have lots left to listen to.

Listen to it here.

Blackbird – Brad Melhdau

Brad Mehldau Blackbird

Brad burst onto the scene in the 90’s and while it’s obvious he has a deep understanding of the trio standard repertoire, his reworkings of contemporary pop tunes allowed him to reach new audiences.

This is perhaps his most famous take of the classic Beatles track.  Interestingly, It’s in the same key as the original version. Brad is joined by Jorge Rossi on drums and Larry Grenadier on acoustic bass. The persistent driving arrangement and gospel tinges make this track a get up and go kind of thong.

And yes it fades out after a rousing semi stride, Sunday morning gospel romp in G.

Fades in to a productive and positive day.

Listen to it here.

The right tunes can get the day started with the proper intentions and sentiments. Try these songs in your playlist. Have a great day out there!