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Incandesence at Absolute Zero. Cuban Pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba exploded onto the American Music Scene with his first Blue Note release Discovery: Live at Montreux (95478, 1990). The recording details Rubalcaba in an empathetic trio setting with Charlie Haden and Paul Motian. The resulting music was a molten virtuosity quickening all in its aural path. Nine years later finds Rubalcaba still with Blue Note releasing a set of performances that, while laid-back, are still potently luminescent.
Maturity. The playing and composition here is mostly of a light and airy hew. The disc opens with two lightly kissed Latin ballads before erupting with a Post Bop Fury on "The Hard One", propelled by Michael Brecker's influential Tenor who returns on the convoluted blues, "Blues Lundvall". The disc high point is a very Latin Cool "Caravan". Rubalcaba turns Edward Kennedy the same way he did John Birks on Diz (dig that nosebleed swing on the bridge!). Inner Voyage finds Rubalcaba with the satisfying accomplishment of this fine recording.
Track Listing: Yolanda Anas; Promenade, The Hard One, Sandyken; Here's That Rainy Day; Caravan; Joan; Blues Lundvall; Joao. (Total Playing Time 73:06).
Personnel: Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Piano; Ignacio Berroa: Drums; Jeff Chambers: Bass; Michael Brecker: Tenor Saxophone.
I love jazz because anything is possible; it has few rules and the best jazz breaks those ones. I prefer free improv because it doesn't really have any rules at all.
I was first exposed to jazz in my teens (in the late sixties).
The first jazz record I bought was Filles de Kilimanjaro by Miles Davis, shortly followed by Extrapolation by John McLaughlin.
My advice to new listeners is to listen as widely as possible and not to make snap judgments--stick with it.