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Michael Weiss: Homage

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Michael Weiss: Homage
In an age when instant gratification often reigns supreme, there is something refreshingly authentic about the leisurely process of refining musical ideas on the bandstand. Pianist Michael Weiss and his cohorts, bassist Paul Sikivie and drummer Pete Van Nostrand, in this aptly titled release, Homage, embodies this organic approach to jazz, presenting a collection of compositions and arrangements that have evolved over years of performance.

The session begins with "Un Petit Quelque Chose" (A Little Something), which, from the opening notes, demonstrates that this trio is a seasoned navigator of the jazz landscape by laying out a finger- popping groove. "Hale-Bopp" is an original from Weiss, filled with bop-influenced piano lines with Weiss scampering over the keyboard. Van Nostrand keeps the number moving and offers a well-developed chorus. The jazz standard "I'll Remember April" comes next but with a non- traditional leisurely tempo. This interpretation works well for Weiss as he develops the number with a mix of command and curiosity. The support from both Sikivie and Van Nostrand is delicately illustrative of the music.

The title track, "Homage," has no particular dedication, but the subtle bolero beat creates a rhythmic tapestry to drive a fascinating interpretative journey under Weiss' thoughtfully restrained piano. There is, however, no mistaking Weiss' intention with his composition "We Love Horace." as he recalls his first purchase of an LP at 15 years, Horace Silver's Blowin' The Blues Away. With his slippery and groove-soaked approach, the number flows out with touches of Silver's harmonic coloration.

Two popular standards, Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" and "Lullaby Of The Leaves" by Bernice Petkere provide Weiss with the opportunity to demonstrate his mastery of interpretation and improvisation prowess. He effortlessly blends various expressive elements to confirm that he is a pianist committed to the art of discovery. The closing track is a Charlie Parker contrafact, "An Oscar For Treadwell," based on the chord changes to "I Got Rhythm," and is dedicated to the great jazz pianist Barry Harris. This up-tempo bopper, with the zippy exchanges between piano, bass and drums, confirms this trio's technical virtuosity and skill.

Track Listing

Un Petit Quelque Chose; Hale-Bopp; I'll Remember April; The Griffin; Homage; Suddenly; We Love Horace; Skylark; Lullaby Of The Leaves; A World Away; An Oscar Gor Treadwell.

Personnel

Album information

Title: Homage | Year Released: 2024 | Record Label: Cellar Music group


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