Nat ‘King’ Cole: Afraid of the Dark

May 25, 2014 at 10:07 am (BBC, civil rights, culture, jazz, Jim D, music, Racism, song, United States)

You have just five days to catch the superb BBC 4 (that’s TV not Radio 4) documentary, Nat ‘King’ Cole : Afraid of the Dark, which deals mainly with the music, but doesn’t flinch from  describing the racism either.

Nat was the first black artist to have a show on mainstream US television, but it only lasted for two years (1955-57) before folding due to lack of sponsorship. Nat (not his channel, ABC) finally pulled the plug, commenting “Madison Avenue is afraid of the dark.”

The contributions to this BBC documentary from from Nat’s widow Maria are extraordinary and often heartbreaking. Meanwhile, here’s a reminder that Nat wasn’t only a (very superior) crooner: had he never sung a note he’d still be remembered as one of the great jazz pianists:

2 Comments

  1. Nat ‘King’ Cole: Afraid of the Dark | OzHouse said,

    […] May 25 2014 by admin […]

  2. februarycallendar said,

    Two takes on Nat’s work from the same source: http://nobilliards.blogspot.co.uk/2008/10/nat-king-cole-love-is-thing.html (apologies for the formatting error which makes most of it quite hard to read) and http://nobilliards.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/nat-king-cole-20-golden-greats.html

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