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

418

Ted Rosenthal Trio: Impromptu

Dr. Judith Schlesinger By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Ted Rosenthal Trio: Impromptu As legend has it, the term "third stream" was invented by Gunther Schuller in 1957, to prevent jazz and classical fans from resenting incursions onto their turf by the other side. This new musical entity would be neither classical nor jazz, and not just a simple merging of the two: it would be more than jazz with strings, or classical pieces played by jazz artists. The challenge was to take compositions that are centuries old and infuse them with a jazz sensibility, without losing the essence of the original.

To pull this off successfully, the artist needs great technique as well as imagination. Only the best can swim in this river without getting water up their nose: these include pianist Fred Hersch, whose two CDs of French and Russian composers became instant classics in the 1980s; and bassist/trombonist Chris Brubeck and pianist Bill Mays, who have both written and recorded their own third-stream material. Ted Rosenthal has waded in here before, with his superb 2005 release The 3Bs (Playscape), a solo outing devoted to Bill Evans, Bud Powell, and Beethoven.

For Impromptu, Rosenthal assembles a crack trio for an all-classical program of Brahms, Mozart, Chopin, Puccini, Schubert, Tchaikovsky, Bach, and Schumann. Bassist Noriko Ueda and drummer Quincy Davis are the perfect compadres for Rosenthal's fluid elegance, subtle humor, and flat-out swing. From the opening track, his blazing technique predicts an unusually masterful excursion; as the CD unfolds, each piece reveals its own singular charms and surprises. Among the unexpected delights, Rosenthal adds wit to Schubert and funk to Brahms, and restores the pensive beauty of the often-abused "Traumerei."

It's impossible to pick highlights out of an exceptional collection like this one, which will appeal to those on both banks of the stream; besides, it could dampen the joy of discovery to telegraph Rosenthal's brilliant transformations ahead of time.


Track Listing: Ballade in G Minor [Brahms]; Nocturne in F Minor [Chopin]; Impromptu in G Flat [Schubert]; June [Tchaikovsky]; Traumerei [Schumann]; Presto [Bach]; O Mio Babbino Caro [Puccini]; Intermezzo in B Flat Minor [Brahams]; Fantasy in D Minor [Mozart]; Theme from Symphony No. 5 [Tchaikovsky].

Personnel: Ted Rosenthal: piano; Noriko Ueda: bass; Quincy Davis: drums.

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Playscape Recordings | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Multiple Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Rhapsody In Gershwin
Rhapsody In Gershwin
Playscape Recordings
2014
buy
Wonderland
Wonderland
Playscape Recordings
2013
buy
Out Of This World
Out Of This World
Playscape Recordings
2011
buy
Impromptu
Impromptu
Playscape Recordings
2010
buy
My Funny Valentine
My Funny Valentine
Venus Records
2008
buy
The King and I
The King and I
Venus Records
2007
buy
Bill Evans Bill Evans
piano
Ahmad Jamal Ahmad Jamal
piano
Cedar Walton Cedar Walton
piano
Joe Zawinul Joe Zawinul
keyboard
McCoy Tyner McCoy Tyner
piano
Hal Galper Hal Galper
piano
Bud Powell Bud Powell
piano
Steve Kuhn Steve Kuhn
piano
Mark Turner Mark Turner
sax, tenor

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.