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Marc Copland: Some More Love Songs (2012)

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Marc Copland: Some More Love Songs Pianist Marc Copland
Marc Copland
Marc Copland
b.1948
piano
—who, oddly, began his jazz career as a saxophonist—took an artistic leap forward with his three New York Trio recordings on Pirouet Records. Employing a rotating crew of bassists with Gary Peacock
Gary Peacock
Gary Peacock
b.1935
bass
, Drew Gress
Drew Gress
Drew Gress
b.1959
bass
, and drummers Paul Motian
Paul Motian
Paul Motian
1931 - 2011
drums
and Bill Stewart
Bill Stewart
Bill Stewart
b.1966
drums
, the pianist rose to a higher profile via his nearly unsurpassed musical excellence. The pianist interpreted standards (and some not-so-standards), along with his own top-flight original compositions, in conjunction with an astute marketing choice of releasing, over the course of three years, this triptych of similarly handsomely packaged outings, much in the fashion of Brad Mehldau
Brad Mehldau
Brad Mehldau
b.1970
piano
's five Art of the Trio (Nonesuch Records, 2011) recordings.

Before the New York sets there was the perhaps overlooked Some Love Songs (Pirouet Records, 2005), that included transcendent explorations of tunes by Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell
b.1943
vocalist
, saxophonist Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
b.1933
saxophone
, Richard Rodgers and Victor Young—a recording that rivaled almost any of iconic pianist Bill Evans
Bill Evans
Bill Evans
1929 - 1980
piano
' best work. Now Copland follows Some Love Songs with Some More Love Songs.

It's hard to imagine the success of Copland without Evans' ground-breaking, his strong contribution to trumpeter Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Miles Davis
1926 - 1991
trumpet
' classic Kind of Blue (Columbia, 1959), and the subsequent consistency of his superb trio recordings over a more-than twenty-year run, from the late fifties until the pianist's untimely death in 1980. Copland has taken Evans' approach of trio democracy, sonic luminosity and harmonic depth and created his own personal language on this—the high point for now—musical journey.

The set opens with Joni Mitchell's lovely and fragile "I Don't Know Where I Stand," a re-visitation of the tune Copland recorded solo on Alone (Pirouet, 2009). This version benefits from the nuanced accompaniment of his trio mates, bassist Drew Gress
Drew Gress
Drew Gress
b.1959
bass
, and drummer Jochen Rueckert. The mood is floating and uncertain, mirroring the lyrical content of Mitchell's version, leading into an up-tempo, beautiful and brash take of the classic "My Funny Valentine," with its implacable momentum.

"Eighty One"—from the songbook of legendary bassist Ron Carter
Ron Carter
Ron Carter
b.1937
bass
and Miles Davis' ESP (Columbia, 1965), the debut from what would become the trumpeter's second great quintet—is cool and mysterious, the interplay highly nuanced. "Rainbow's End," Copland's lone original composition, shimmers like late afternoon sunlight reflecting off the facets of wavelets on a wind-ruffled pond, while Cole Porter
Cole Porter
Cole Porter
1891 - 1964
composer/conductor
's ever-familiar "I've Got You Under My Skin"—a 1956 masterpiece by Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
1915 - 1998
vocalist
, who sounded supremely suave and confident on his take—gets a wandering and impressionist treatment by Copland's trio, with the heart of the melody slipping in and out of the shadows.

The set closes with one of its most tender moment, Victor Young's "When I Fall In Love," brimming with sparkling optimism and a fitting wrap-up to what may be Copland's finest trio outing to date.


Track Listing: I Don't Know Where I Stand; My Funny Valentine; Eighty One; Rainbow's End; I've Got You Under My Skin; I Remember You; When I Fall in Love.

Personnel: Marc Copland: piano; Drew Gress: bass; Jochen Ruekert: drums

Record Label: Pirouet Records

Style: Modern Jazz


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