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Sportin' Life

Weather Report

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

With 1985’s Sportin’ Life, Weather Report continued their late-career examination of various international scenes. Through the slow tribal rhythms of “Indiscretions,” the calypso steel drums of “Hot Cargo,” or the Brazilian motifs that surface on “Confians” (which features the vocals of percussionist Minu Cinélu), the album shows an effortless assimilation of world music. Upon its release, Joe Zawinul described it as a tropical travelogue about “the easy life in the good places where people like to go. Palm trees, ocean, places like the French Riviera, where we spent time last summer. Originally, we wanted to have an album cover with a collage of postcards. That’s what the music is supposed to be: an international resort album, something really hip.” That’s not to say that this album makes for passive listening by any means. “Corner Pocket,” “Pearl on the Half-Shell," and “Ice-Pick Willy” show Weather Report at their wily, byzantine best. What Zawinul was talking about was a belief that atmosphere and sensory pleasure are just as important as the notes being played. Sportin’ Life is an album that strikes a perfect balance between those values.

Customer Reviews

This Ship Is Sailing!

Get on board! This ship will take you around the world on a rhythmic journey. Once again, Weather Report has created a musical vacation, allowing us to travel to many ports of call. Corner Pocket and Hot Cargo give us rich polyrhythms and incessant beats. Pearl in a Half Shell and Face on the Barroom Floor paint a wonderful picture of the resort nightlife from midnight to morning. Many long time Weather Report fans may have moved on before this release. But this cruise is not to be missed!


Formed: 1970

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s

Weather Report started out as a jazz equivalent of what the rock world in 1970 was calling a "supergroup." But unlike most of the rock supergroups, this one not only kept going for a good 15 years, it more than lived up to its billing, practically defining the state of the jazz-rock art throughout almost all of its run. Weather Report also anticipated and contributed to the North American interest in world music rhythms and structures, prodded by keyboardist/co-founder Joe Zawinul. And WR, like many...
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