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

143

Don Friedman Quartet: Match Point

By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Born in San Francisco to a musical family, (his mother was an opera singer), Don Friedman has been known for a long time as a musician's musician, never quite achieving the public notoriety his piano styling deserves. As a young man in San Francisco, he played with the créme de la créme of the West Coast jazz society like Shorty Rogers, Chet Baker, Buddy Collette, Ornette Coleman, Dexter Gordon and Scott LaFaro, quite an eclectic group of jazz stylists which set the groundwork for his playing for his career. His ability to fit in with all forms carried over to New York, where he moved in 1958. There he worked with the likes of Pepper Adams, Booker Little, Jimmy Giuffre, Charles Lloyd, Chuck Wayne, Dick Haymes, Elvin Jones and Herbie Mann. He made his first album in 1961. But much of his recorded work was never released in the US, but in Japan. This is beginning to be rectified as his 1960's LPs for Riverside have been reissued on CD. Hopefully the same will happen with his Progressive label LPs in the near future.

This quartet album is a balanced mix of standards and Friedman originals, with the former in the majority. The playing echoes his variegated background. Modernistic tendencies prevail on "Ricardo Bossa Nova". Matters turn to swing on Lester Young's "Tickle Toes" with some luminous tenor sax by Tom Butts. Friedman's "Match Point" is driving hard bop recalling Art Blakey's groups, with Frank Ferreri's drums pushing the pianist. Gary Mazzaroppi's bass comes into play in a significant way on this track. Introspectiveness dominates a very thoughtful "`Round Midnight" featuring a lovely Butts tenor statement. Then there's a comfortable rendition of "If you Could See Me Now". For four of the cuts, the group is joined by vocalist Alyse Levy. She shines especially bright on an up tempo "Time After Time" with her vocalizing taking on Lee Wiley tones on "There's No Such Thing as Love".

Match Point is 70 minutes of straightforward, well-conceived jazz music performed by a veteran master pianist and his highly skilled friends and it deserves a listen. Recommended.


Track Listing: Tickle Toes; If You Could See Me Now; I'll Remember April; There's No Such Thing as Love*; Almost Everything; Ricardo Bossa Nova; `Round Midnight; Green Dolphin Street; Here's That Rainy Day*; Match Point; Travelin'; Prelude to a Kiss; Time after Time*; S.S. Cool

Personnel: Don Friedman - Piano; Tom Butts - Tenor Sax; Gary Mazzaroppi - Bass; Frank Ferreri - Drums; Alyse Levy - Vocals*

| Record Label: TBR Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

Extended Analysis
CD/LP/Track Review
In the Studio
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Multiple Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Waltz for Marilyn
Waltz for Marilyn
Jazz Excursion Records
2007
buy
Piano Works VI: From A To Z
Piano Works VI: From...
ACT Music
2006
buy
Live at JazzBaltica
Live at JazzBaltica
Skip Records
2005
buy
My Favorite Things
My Favorite Things
441 Records
2004
buy
Waltz For Debby
Waltz For Debby
441 Records
2003
buy
My Foolish Heart
My Foolish Heart
SteepleChase Records
2003
buy

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.