Joel Bakan is a highly-lauded and brilliant legal scholar, author, and filmmaker, including the powerful books and movies The Corporation and The New Corporation: The Unfortunately Necessary Sequel. He is also a very good friend of many years, going back to our teen years in Vancouver, Canada, where we talked, laughed, discovered Vietnamese food, and most importantly played jazz. As Joel says, in his heart, what he really is? A jazz guitarist. I could write a lot of words about Joel and our 44 years (and counting) friendship. We have both experienced some true highs and lows, including some truly good music, from the joy of being ushers at each other’s first weddings in 1987, to bearing witness to the tragic loss later on in our personal lives, but I am delighted that he is happily remarried, and he and his wife Rebecca remain 2 of my favorite people to visit when I get back to Vancouver. He is very funny, easy to laugh, insightful, and incisive, but simplest just to say he is a mensch.
We got together over zoom for a wide-ranging conversation about everything from jazz to politics to his new film and book, not to mention maybe even a little basketball versus hockey. (Hoops is jazz, Joel!). Here it is, unedited.