All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 (or more) and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

166

Jacques Loussier Trio: Bach: The Brandenburgs

Jim Santella By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Jacques Loussier Trio: Bach: The Brandenburgs With his trio, pianist Jacques Loussier has interpreted classical works in a straight-ahead jazz setting for over four decades. He made quite an impression in 1960 with the Play Bach Trio and has never looked back. Newer trios have developed under his direction, letting the practice of reinterpreting classical music in a jazz vein grow prolifically.

The music of J.S. Bach has much in common with modern jazz. There's considerable freedom, changes in mood and tempo, and a driving force. The spirit runs free. For the most part, the Brandenburgs offer light and carefree melodies with embellished, lingering phrases. J.S. Bach composed the six concerti for the Margrave of Brandenburg between 1708 and 1720. The central piece, "Concerto No. 5, was written for flute, violin and harpsichord. Loussier has always felt that it made the best fit for his jazz trio.

Piano, bass and drums negotiate the allegro passages of each concerto with ease and express ideas naturally with the slower portions. The piano's clarity remains the album's focus, as Loussier drives note for note what Bach laid down. When the trio improvises, those crystal-clear piano lines remain intact as the artists weave alternate ideas around each theme.

While the music seldom swings, it does provide a fairly enjoyable rhythmic stride in its interpretation. "Concerto No. 5 serves as the session's high point. The other concerti lack the emotional feeling that this one provides.

Loussier and his trio tackle "No. 5 with authority. Not by coincidence, it's also the longest of the concerto interpretations. With this favorite member of the Brandenburgs, we get plenty of swing, animated rhythmic action, a slow ballad middle movement, and a highly dynamic emotional environment. Loussier's interpretation closes with a hot allegro movement that sums up what he feels about keeping music such as this alive and well. Bach's music still holds many surprises, and Loussier's swinging trio is able to bring it into the 21st Century with determined clarity.


Track Listing: Concerto No 1 in F Major (I. Allegro; II. Adagio; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 2 in F Major(I. Allegro; II. Andante; III. Allegro Assai); Concerto No. 3 in G Major (I. Allegro; II. Adagio; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 4 in G Major (I. Allegro; II. Andante; III. Presto); Concerto No. 5 in D Major (I. Allegro; II. Affetuoso; III. Allegro); Concerto No. 6 in B-flat Major (I. Allegro; II. Allegro; III. Adagio Ma Non Tanto).

Personnel: Jacques Loussier: piano; Benoit Dunoyer de Segonzac: bass; André Arpino: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Telarc Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
[no cover]
Play Bach No 1 / No 2
MD (Belgium)
2011
buy
[no cover]
Plays Bach The 50th...
MD (Belgium)
2009
buy
[no cover]
Tu Seras Terriblement...
MD (Belgium)
2009
buy
[no cover]
Play Bach Highlights
MD (Belgium)
2008
buy
[no cover]
Plays Bach Encore!
MD (Belgium)
2007
buy
Bach: The Brandenburgs
Bach: The Brandenburgs
Telarc Records
2006
buy
Bill Evans Bill Evans
piano
Dave Brubeck Dave Brubeck
piano
Earl Hines Earl Hines
piano
Brad Mehldau Brad Mehldau
piano
Henry Mancini Henry Mancini
composer/conductor

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.