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In the penultimate episode of his widely popular and critically acclaimed HBO series, Painting with John, its creator, John Lurie, sat in a Manhattan recording studio, working out musical parts for the show’s soundtrack. “After the illness started, I didn’t think I’d ever be able to do this again,” said Lurie.
Even as he occupies an enigmatic, multi-faceted, five-decade career characterized by the unexpected, perhaps even Lurie is surprised by this new release of a double-album collection of music, Painting with John, extracted from the series.
Go back a quarter-century or so: As an exotic saxophonist and composer whose pieces alternately recalled cracked-mirror reflections of Thelonious Monk, or Fela Kuti, or Raymond Chandler, Lurie led the vastly influential, downtown NYC jazz ensemble, The Lounge Lizards, through dazzling albums and tours across the globe. He scored indie films and Hollywood hits, collecting a Grammy nomination for Get Shorty along the way and releasing his own surreality-TV series, Fishing with John.