Chick Corea, en av verdens mest innflytelsesrike jazzpianister, har visst planer om å feire 75-årsdagen om bord på Freewinds:
[Chick Corea and Alfreddie Johnson, both Freedom Medal winners]
Chick Corea is turning 75 next week and to note the milestone the New York Times yesterday gave the jazz great a glowing tribute in the form of a Q&A about his ambitious plans later this fall to celebrate turning three quarters of a century old.
However, what stunned us was the final response Chick gave when Chinen asked him what he would be doing on his actual birthday, on June 12. And kudos to the Times for including his answer…
I’m actually going to be out on a ship called the Freewinds, doing an event that we do yearly in Scientology called the Maiden Voyage. A while back I did two recordings — one called “To the Stars,” and the other called “The Ultimate Adventure” — based on fiction works by L. Ron Hubbard, who is my favorite fiction writer. So one thing I’m going to do onboard is keyboard improvisations to go along with the text of those books. That’s where I’ll be on my birthday.
Tony Ortega synes dette skurrer en smule, sett i lys av alt det horrible som har funnet sted på dette asbestbefengte skipet: Valeska Paris forteller at hun ble mer eller mindre holdt fanget på skipet i 11 år, slik at hun ikke skulle få se mora (som hadde saksøkt Scientologikirken); Ramana Dienes-Browning ble òg holdt borte fra sine foreldre; Don Jason forteller Tampa Bay Times om hvordan han rømte fra Freewinds. Dette er bare et lite knippe hårreisende historier fra skipet, og Coreas lette tone virker derfor noe upassende:
For those reasons, we were pretty surprised to see Chick Corea tell the New York Times that he’d be playing piano for the assembled thetans and whales (wealthy Scientology donors) on the aging barge that has such unsettling connotations for people paying attention to Scientology’s many controversies. The Freewinds, looking more battered and bruised all the time, gamely plies the Caribbean as Scientology itself continues to take on water and sink into oblivion.
Will Chick Corea be the last to abandon ship?