Friday night, I had a dream. I don't remember what the dream was about, in fact, I don't remember the dream at all. All I remember is that I woke up and I remembered this track I had heard a few times back in college (I might have the MP3 somewhere). There was a man with a really unique, full, booming speaking voice (Godlike, perhaps?), and he recorded an album about colors. It had some off-the-wall stuff with his voice laid over jazz, stuff like how green didn't want yellow to be in spectrum, but blue stuck up for yellow, reminding green that blue and yellow could get together and make their own green. I didn't remember all those specifics during that moment in which I awoke. I just had some notion of that guy in my head, and I thought was that I needed to look that guy up when I woke up for real. I thought that maybe I should write something down. Nardeen. That's what I should write down. Ken? But I didn't get up; my desire to sleep won. I rolled back over and told myself that I needed to remember to look something up.
Amazingly, when I finally woke up Saturday morning, I actually did remember that I had told myself to remember something. Something like Ken Bardeen or Ken Nardeen. I wrote down Ken Nardeen on a scrap of paper within five minutes of being awake and went about my day.
At some point in the afternoon, I tried googling for something about voice, colors, jazz. Nothing seemed to come up, so I gave up. I was so certain that Nardeen was so wrong, so way off, that I didn't even try searching for it.
Then Sunday night, I was driving home from my Aunt and Uncle's home where my family had just gathered for Christmas. There was a story being read on NPR, something about a golden dreydl (as sundown of the 25th was the start of Hanukkah this year). The voice prompt on my GPS unit went off, so I turned off the radio to listen and navigate a few turns. A few minutes later, I turned the radio back on.
It was him. That voice, it had to be him. Telling Christmas stories over jazz tunes. Yes, it was him, I was certain. So I listened. And at one point he said, "Oh, hey, it's me, Ken Nardeen," in that unforgettable bass of his. Something like Nardeen. I still wasn't sure about the pronunciation. But I was shocked at how close I was.
This morning, I turned to Amazon and Google to figure it out. Ken Nordine is his name. He had a holiday special on WBEZ. Plus I found that album Colors. Give it a listen (especially the track Yellow; open that link in Windows Media Player).
What are the odds that I'd (a) wake up thinking about something so random, something I haven't thought about in years; (b) actually remember it the next morning; that (c) he would happen to have a program on the radio the next day; that (d) I would happen to be tuned in to that particular station at that particular time and that (e) my memory of his name would be so close to being correct? Slim, I can tell you that. Or maybe I'm just psychic. But wow, what a random sequence of events. Whatever the odds, that Colors album is now on my wish list.