When I learned, with the rest of the world. about the passing of the legendary, and much beloved, singer and song stylist Al Jarreau, I didn’t just weep. I put on every vinyl record, cassette and CD that I own of Jarreau’s marvelous musical stylings. He may be gone in physical form, but we’ve got his luscious, bluesy, jazz-scat-fantastic voice with us always. Don’t y’all remember, from “Roof Garden,”  “Does-anyone-wanna-go-walkin’-in-the-garden / Does-anyone-wanna-go-dance-up-on-the-roof”?  Yes, to both!

Jarreau mesmerized us, whether we were in our homes or watching him live onstage, as he mimicked guitars, drums (beatboxing) and synthesizers. This was long before the a cappella gone mainstream — but, still, a beautiful thing — of gifted ensembles such as Duwende and Pentatonix.

Of the many songs that he finessed with his mighty pipes, my faves — well, every song he sang was a favorite — include “Spain I Can Recall,” “Rainbow in Your Eyes” (my goodness, what a sexy song, and I love the way Jarreau lets his alto just ride those rhythms), “Tell Me What I Gotta Do,” “Roof Garden,” “It’s Not Hard to Love You,” “Teach Me Tonight,” “Mornin’,” “We’re in This Love Together,” “After All” and “Moonlighting.” Nuh-unh, don’t ask incredulously, “Moonlighting”?  That’s right. I didn’t stutter. “Moonlighting” was my jam in the late 1980s!

Well, I’ll pause my melancholy musings tonight and turn to his pop-fresh “Mornin’,” the celestial bridge of which reflects where I think of him residing … well, let’s say, flying in the afterlife:

My heart will soar
With love that’s rare and real
My smiling face will feel every cloud
Then higher still
Beyond the blue until
I know I can
Like any man
Reach out my hand
And touch the face of GOD

Image result for public domain photos Al Jarreau

Rest in peace, Alwin Lopez “Al” Jarreau

Credit for top photo of the one and only Al Jarreau:  By Stig Ove Voll – originally posted to Flickr as Al Jarreau, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5050243

“From THE Rooftop Garden to the Rainbow in His Eyes: Al Jarreau’s Everlasting Serenade”  © 2017 Chantale Rêve