301

David Leonhardt Trio: Bach to the Blues

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
David Leonhardt Trio: Bach to the Blues Pianist David Leonhardt takes a right turn directly into Jacques Loussier territory with the release of Bach to the Blues. Loussier has made his career arranging jazz interpretations of Bach, Handel, Mozart, and Beethoven. His arranging and playing are characterized by a crystalline precision while often sacrificing space for improvisation. Leonhardt loosens the laces a bit, allowing not only for more fertile solo ground, but also introduces whimsy into his arrangements.

Leonhardt also expands the classical-jazz repertoire with Aaron Copland's arrangement of "Simple Gifts" and a reverent twist on Schubert's famous "Ave Maria," as well as an interesting "Claire De Lune." Leonhardt opens his recital with Bach's "Prelude in G Major" from the Cello Suites. Leonhardt mixes the piece up, giving it a straight contrapuntal treatment echoed by Matthew Parrish's fine pizzicato accompaniment. The piece breaks into a breezy 4/4, accented by drummer Alvester Garnett's snare shots. The time modulation recalls Dave Brubeck's "Blue Rondo a la Turk." Toward the end of the piece, after eights have been traded, Leonhardt launches into a manic samba that concludes this mixed drink of a jazz interpretation.

Bach gets the most thorough treatment by Leonhardt, who includes three Preludes. In addition to the one in G Major, there is the "Prelude in A minor" (BWV 543) and the "Prelude in B-flat" (BWV 560) (this latter piece providing Leonhardt his bluesiest interlude). Beethoven's "Adagio" from the Pathetique piano sonata (Sonata No. 8 in C- minor, Opus 13) provides Leonhardt an almost balladic vehicle for his trio. The pianist spreads the piece open, allowing for shifting times and paces. "Simple Gifts" sticks out like an American Thumb, possessing the greatest folk quality and treatment by Leonhardt.

Cross-pollination of feeble man-designated musical genres is always a welcome phenomenon, further promoting music as opposed to a specific type of music. Discs like this offer endless entertainment to both jazz and classical- heads alike. Happen to be both? All the better.

Track Listing: Prelude in G Major; Claire De Lune; Ave Maria; Gymnopedie No. 1; Prelude in A Minor; Adagio from Pathetique; Simple Gifts; Mazurka in G Minor; Prelude in Bb; Mazurka in C Major; Canon in D.

Personnel: David Leonhardt: piano; Matthew Parrish: bass; Alvester Garnett: drums.

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Big Bang Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read The Big Wig CD/LP/Track Review The Big Wig
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Dreamer Is the Dream CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert CD/LP/Track Review Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Failure of Words CD/LP/Track Review The Failure of Words
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Groove Dreams CD/LP/Track Review Groove Dreams
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Kami Fusen CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read "Up and Coming" CD/LP/Track Review Up and Coming
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: January 29, 2017
Read "Out Of The Blue" CD/LP/Track Review Out Of The Blue
by Tyran Grillo
Published: November 4, 2016
Read "The Beast" CD/LP/Track Review The Beast
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 20, 2016
Read "Fugitive Beauté" CD/LP/Track Review Fugitive Beauté
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 11, 2016
Read "Speechless" CD/LP/Track Review Speechless
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 27, 2017
Read "The Roc" CD/LP/Track Review The Roc
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 28, 2017

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!