Dave Brubeck—recently called "the reigning elder statesman of jazz" by the Washington Post—died Wednesday in Connecticut on his way to a cardiology appointment, one day shy of his 92nd birthday. But he'll really outlast the apocalypse. Donald Fagen assured us so, in his classic song "New Frontier," where the Steely Dan singer, projecting himself back to the bop-crazed 1950s, sounded positively giddy about surviving a nuclear disaster in a fallout shelter. The end of the world as we knew it would feel fine, as long as a guy had his girl—and the jazzman—to weather the ultimate storm:
"I hear you're mad about Brubeck/ I like your eyes, I like him too/ He's an artist, a pioneer /We've got to have some music on the new frontier..."
Brubeck's Time coverTalk about pioneering: Brubeck appeared on the cover of Time magazine in 1954, as only the second jazz figure to earn such a pop-culture honor. The first had been Louis Armstrong, but the fact that Brubeck was able to do it without also being a vocalist or evenRead More »from When the World Was ‘Mad About Brubeck’: Dave Brubeck, 1920-2012