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Roy Hargrove: In Harmony

Thomas Fletcher BY

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Roy Hargrove: In Harmony
Roy Hargrove is a trumpeter often affiliated with styles of music beyond jazz including hip-hop and soul. In addition, Mulgrew Miller is character that has always proven his versatile piano playing. However, this album is a melting pot of well-loved standards and compositions written by an array of influences. In Harmony presents previously unreleased live recordings by these two from Merkin Hall, New York City (2006) and Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania (2007).

Both musicians, who left to join the ancestors too early, are heard in duet thanks to producers Zev Feldman, Larry Clothier and George Klabin who were able to record them in the moment. In Harmony offers a previously inaccessible look into how both Hargrove and Miller, known for their active role in groove and swing, demonstrate a drummerless encounter worthy of the highest accolade. In fact, Hargrove's discography comprises of only one other album where a drummer is not present, Parker's Mood (Verve Records, 1995).

The repertoire covers a wide range of styles and influences; bright tempos, funky drum grooves and delicate ballads. The opening track, familiar to many of us, Cole Porter's "What Is This Thing Called Love?," moves swiftly as we hear Hargrove saunter above Miller's well-judged comping. From one mood to another, Benny Golson's tribute to Clifford Brown titled "I Remember Clifford" gives Hargrove an opportunity to accentuate his respect and time devoted towards one of his greatest inspirations. Other standards that feature include Mack Gordon and Harry Warren's "This Is Always," expressed beautifully on flugelhorn, Bronisław Kaper's "Invitation" as well as two compositions by Thelonious Monk: "Monk's Dream" and "Ruby My Dear." The duo is totally simpatico, and the tracks are varied, characterful and compelling.

In a statement describing the release, Co-President and Co-Producer of Resonance Records, Zev Feldman said, "they're playing their hearts out. I personally find these to be some of the most daring and beautiful interpretations of classic jazz repertoire I've heard. It's an honour for Resonance to be able to collaborate with the families of Roy Hargrove and Mulgrew Miller to bring this music to their many fans, and we thank them for the opportunity."

An elaborate booklet filled with rare photos and statements/interviews by Sonny Rollins, Christian McBride, Ron Carter, Keyon Harrold plus many more are included alongside the two CDs.

Track Listing

What Is This Thing Called Love?; This Is Always; I Remember Clifford; Triste; Invitation; Con Alma; Never Let Me Go; Just in Time; Fungii Mama; Monk’s Dream; Ruby, My Dear; Blues for Mr. Hill; Ow!.

Personnel

Roy Hargrove: trumpet; Mulgrew Miller: piano.

Album information

Title: In Harmony | Year Released: 2021 | Record Label: Resonance Records

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