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Gary Peacock Trio at the Jazz Standard

Mike Jurkovic By

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Gary Peacock Trio
Jazz Standard
New York, NY
November 7, 2017

We rarely experience true freedom anymore. At random we're caught in someone's selfie or observed by a traffic or security camera. Hackers hack and everyone knows your vital information and search history. The machine knows your algorithm and sends specific ads to your desktop. Your cell phone has GPS. Freedom isn't another word to lose when they've confiscated all the words.

And then the lights go down and the trio takes the small, Jazz Standard stage and without words, we have music. Gary Peacock, a giant before search histories and selfies nods towards pianist Marc Copland and from the anticipatory air melody emerges. Joey Baron's ride rings clear. Now in his 80's, Peacock has lost none of his limber dexterity and imagination, and so, consequently, none of his freedom, pulling from his instrument all its pathos and humor, often within the same solo, if not the same measure.

The freedom to interpret, to layback, soar. To not let the audience know the title of the composition just played and the freedom of the audience not to know the titles, just ride the music. And just when you think the leader might intro the next tune, or his bandmates, his fingers hit the strings and we're all freed from expectation again. Free to hear a quote from a jazz chestnut, to marvel, to revel, to create . . . for Baron to bang on any part of his kit to make new rhythms, new sounds. For each player to bounce with or off of the other. Copland, often hunched over his instrument like Lucy's crush Schroeder, his sincerity at his instrument overwhelming. The trio's mission to forever find something new to play. Freedom, in a world rapidly losing its way.

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