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Billy Taylor: Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center (2005)

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Billy Taylor: Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

A tribute to the retiring Dr. Billy Taylor, Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center documents the artist's performance career at the Kennedy Center and presents him in the context he loved best—on stage and sharing his love of jazz by not only performing his own music, but also bringing to the audience some of jazz's greatest contemporary voices.

Culled from several years' worth of live recordings at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater, the album presents nine tracks, each an original composition by Taylor. All feature his longstanding trio partners, drummer Winard Harper and bassist Chip Jackson, and many bring to the stage a combination of guest artists who blend their own distinct voices with the trio.

As generous on stage as off, Taylor provides ample space for such distinguished players as Arturo Sandoval, Terrance Blanchard, Stanley Turrentine, Steve Turre, and Russell Malone to showcase their many talents, and on each track Harper and Jackson deliver in their own inimitable style.

A fitting tribute to one of jazz's greatest educators, advocates, and master pianists, Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center is an important album both for its musical content and as an historical documentation of Taylor's final recording period.


Track Listing: 1. Birdwatcher; 2. If You Really Are Concerned; 3. Diz; 4. Theodora; 5. Suite for Jazz Piano and Orchestra; 6. A Bientot; 7. Titoro; 8. Easy Walker; 9. I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to be Free.

Personnel: Billy Taylor: Piano; Winard Harper: Drums; Chip Jackson: Bass. Special Guests: Terence Blanchard, Stanley Turrentine, Russell Malone, Stefon Harris, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Cyrus Chestnut, Arturo Sandoval, Steve Turre.

Record Label: Kennedy Center Jazz Recordings

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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