Mulgrew Miller is one of the unsung heroes of jazz. The veteran pianist, who turns fifty this month, has played in the bands of major figures like Betty Carter, Woody Shaw, Art Blakey, and Tony Williams and has more than four hundred recording credits to his name. Though respected as a dependable, first-call sideman, he's only recently been getting the attention he deserves as a leader, thanks to a series of excellent releases on the MaxJazz label. That welcome trend should continue with his latest, a followup to last year's well-regarded trio outing recorded live at Yoshi's in Oakland.
A muscular, bluesy post bop player in the McCoy Tyner mode, Miller leads his talented young rhythm section (bassist Derrick Hodge and drummer Karriem Riggins) with energy and urgency on a nicely varied 72-minute set. Highlights include a boisterous romp through Victor Feldman's "Joshua, a funky take on the standard "Comes Love, and a haunting solo piano rendition of Rodgers and Hart's "It's Easy to Remember. As a tribute to two of his late mentors, Miller offers hard-driving versions of drummer Tony Williams' "Citadel and pianist James Williams' "Road Life.
Always steady and at times dazzling, Mulgrew Miller again makes the case that he belongs in the upper echelon of mainstream jazz pianists. This is another strong effort from a compelling artist deserving wider acclaim.
Joshua; Comes Love; Road Life; It's Easy to Remember; One's Own Room; Little Girl Blue; Citadel
Mulgrew Miller (piano); Derrick Hodge (bass); Karriem Riggins (drums)
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.
Get more of a good thing
Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.