Jazz together: six bright duet albums
Jazz is an abundant genre. Lush orchestras, lengthy improvisations, dueling soloists, a meandering rhythm section, and so on. But not always the more the better. When jazzmen consciously limit themselves, sometimes a miracle happens. So sometimes a simple piano duet can sound as broad as an orchestra. Today we have selected several albums for you, where just two instruments create a whole universe of sound and drive.
Charlie Haden & Brad Mehldau “Long Ago And Far Away” Two eras of jazz. The great double bassist Charlie Hayden and the popular pianist-innovator brad Meldau collaborated a lot, having met back in 1993. Hayden praised the young jazz star in every possible way, but Meldau, of course, admired the double bass player, especially noting — not surprisingly — his epoch-making free albums with Ornette Coleman.But it was as a Duo that colleagues and friends gave just one big concert. Fortunately, it was recorded. This is a concert on November 5, 2007 in Mannheim, Germany, in the Christuskirch during the Enjoy Jazz festival. The record was released by the Verve label only this year.Hayden, as you know, left a lot of duet albums-with Hank Jones, Gonzalo Rubalcaba and others. Everywhere his instrument sounds special; here it is bright, with a groove and, at the same time, calm and deep. In addition, he manages to give a speech to a colleague who is old enough to be his son.However, Meldau also knows something about exotic duets (in his discography recordings with mandolinist Chris Tiley, drummer mark Giuliana, guitarist Pat matini, classical singers, etc.) Hayden and Meldau once found each other and matched perfectly. So in this recording, they interact perfectly — with the natural ease of respect for each other. But what to say-include only this track — everything is clear from the first bars.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, DeezerSteve Lacy & Mal Waldron “At the Bimhuis 1982” the 1982 concert In Amsterdam is not the only collaboration of soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy and pianist Mal Waldron. Both are what is called cult people who have played with many great ones. And the icons themselves.The program begins with a pensive “Blues for Aïda” with an ultrasonic soprano saxophone squeak. Next, “Snake Out” — a kind of creepy post-apocalyptic Boogie. The third is the playful ballad “Reflections”, and so on, in the same spirit of a carnival Thriller.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, Deezer
Archie Shepp & Dollar Brand ” Duet “this joint album was recorded in 1978 by saxophonist Archie Shepp and South African pianist Abdullah Ibrahim, who was once known in the States as”the Dollar Sign”. However, Commerce has nothing to do with it.The first track – “Fortunato” -is alarmingly romantic, with dissonances within the bounds of decency. The second track is “Barefoot Boy from Queens Town” — a kind of apocalyptic Boogie. And” Left Alone ” by the aforementioned Mel Waldron is almost completely Blues. The final “Monebah” begins with some neoclassical / minimalist piano passages, but continues again with a smooth tenor saxophone melody in a warm thick sound a La Ben Webster. Here it seems that shapp and Ibrahim are innovators-avant-gardists, and the material turned out to be almost background. But still-just about.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, Deezer
Alexander von Schlippenbach, Manfred Schoof “Blue Hawk” Romantic avant-garde-does this happen? And then! Well, not exactly avant-garde — just an outstanding German pianist-innovator, a cult figure of European improvisational music. Everywhere different, but always with its German devilry.This 2011 album is really, just beautiful and enjoyable. In every fragile note, in every smooth melody and thoughtful solo. Play — as breathe, in General.Apple Music
Kenny Barron, Stan Getz “People Time” (Live At Jazzhus Montmartre, Copenhagen / March 3rd 1991)Well, this is just my favorite album — from jazz, non-jazz, live, whatever. I bought a pirate double on the “humpback” almost accidentally, for the sake of interest — and that’s all, I still drive. Although, it would seem, what is it: Getz with his warm rough sound, Barron with his classicism and heat — not on one album you can hear this. Especially since there is “play” they are in a café in Copenhagen, where Goetz was enjoying life with his young wife… Or maybe that’s why this album is so good: free people in a free country play for an audience-almost for friends-who listen to them with love and respect.Interestingly, the program was originally released on a single LP. Then, in the era of total reissue of everything with everything and on everything, they made 2 CDS. And I think they didn’t overdo it.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, Deezer
John Hicks and Frank Morgan “Together” We recently reviewed a recording of an amazing man named Frank Morgan, his live duet with the pianist George Cables. Here he performed in 2005 and 2006 as a duet with pianist John Hicks (both died just a year or two after the album was released). Comparing this and that live is quite fun and exciting. They are completely different in approach, atmosphere, mood, and so on. Although the material partially intersects, “A Night in Tunisia” is solved here as something speed-puzzle. Old man Morgan obviously loved this play, always cutting it up and reassembling it in some special way. With “‘Round Midnight” it is more predictable-a classic ballad.In General, the sound here is about this: imagine a landscape with hills. The mountains on the left and right are Hicks ‘ powerful chords and passages (surprisingly, the walking bass in his left hand sometimes sounds downright contrabass attack!), and the swift stream rushing between them is the sax of Morgana.