SOME POIGNANT New Years Day news. Like many, I woke to hear of the passing of Natalie Cole.
For me it was a layered loss. I’d done some work for Carole Cole for a box set of her father’s work that came out about a decade ago. I’d felt lucky that I had been trusted write liner notes that would look at not just her father’s musical arc but the family’s history in Los Angeles. Like so many I grew up with stacks of Nat Cole records leaning against the hi-fi. On top of that, simply put, the Coles were L.A. royalty.
It fell to Carole in later years to keep watch over the estate and the music rights and through it was in consult with Natalie. Together they protected that story, the legacy. Every anecdote, every date, every memory was checked and double-checked. Legacy was as important to them as was his burnished voice.
Looking at the photo above, it’s impossible to wrap my brain around the fact that they are all gone. What’s hit me more than anything is that the season started officially — as always for me – on Christmas Eve when I first heard Nat Cole’s “The Christmas Song.” And the season ended upon hearing the news of Natalie’s New Years Eve passing.
Some sad magic symmetry.