Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but the creator also has a hell of a lot to do with it when it comes to the arts. Every musical performance leaves certain items open for debate for and from those on the receiving end, but some things remain irrefutable because of those on the giving side. In the case of pianist Ayako Shirasaki, the undeniable truth(s) surround her dexterous handiwork on the 88s, melodic clarity, and arranging ingenuity, all of which were evident on her stunner of a solo piano disc-- Falling Leaves: Live In Hamburg (Jan Matthies ...read more
There is a certain sublime pleasure in the simplicity of the trio playing piano, bass and drums. The Ayako Shirasaki trio's approach is straightforward and straight ahead jazz at it's best. Blending both traditional and original compositions, Shirasaki is a nimble and facile pianist who knows how to swing like Bud Powell, one of her musical inspirations as well as bop with the best of 'em.Where you listen is as important as what you listen to, and Some Other Time would sound terrific in an intimate club, a wine and cheese party or staring dreamily out of a ...read more
Energy is one of the most important and elusive elements in jazz. Some people foolishly equate energy with speed or skill, but the two aren't necessarily linked. Bill Evans didn't sprint around the keyboard, but his music created a cocoon of energy that enveloped an audience in a way that few pianists could ever emulate. Energy comes from the way an artist connects to a song and the way they can take an audience, whether in the room or listening at home, on the journey with them. It's all too rare to encounter a musician capable of harnessing that energy ...read more
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