This post comes from Mockingbird friend and jazz fan Morris Middleton.

As a jazz pianist I’m always on the lookout for a beautiful song, and in Esperanza Spalding’s haunting song, Espera, I found one.  But in it I heard something even more haunting. The human cry for help.

The word espera derives from the Spanish, Catalan and Portuguese infinitive esperar, “to hope, wait or expect.”  The talented Spalding’s eponymous Espera is labeled a song of hope, yet its lyrics paint a picture as haunting as the minor key in which it is written.

Its lyrics paint a bleak and hopeless picture of…

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