295

Don Friedman: My Favorite Things

By

Sign in to view read count
Don Friedman: My Favorite Things
One of the sweetest sounds in jazz is that of a well groomed piano trio. Many would agree, there's little to contend with an able- bodied threesome, flipping through the pages of this or that tune, together finding its cozy hearth in harmony and rhythm. Veteran pianist Don Friedman has found that center and, alongside bassist George Mraz and drummer Lewis Nash, tendered a second offering from their ensemble, this time entitled My Favorite Things.

The trio's first release, '03's Waltz for Debby , was lauded by critics for its intimacy, warm tone and fiery interplay. And though sequels often fail to deliver the artistry and drive of their preceding halves, it will delight listeners to hear that Friedman and company have managed to buck the trend. Again their album is split into ten robust tracks and is nicely balanced by pointed standards and Friedman originals.

Among the standards here, highlights include the title track, made famous for jazz by John Coltrane's historic 1960 version, and Thelonious Monk's "Ask Me Now." The former exults in the same bursting yet calculated energy of its legendary forebearer, giving a sense that at any moment the dam could break and tides of expression would drown the delicate order at play. But the deluge never comes and the listener is left to delight in a tenuous yet goaded high-wire act.

The latter, plucked from a rarer pile of Monk gems, is similarly invocative in spirit. Friedman chops up his usually lush harmonic style, while Nash and Mraz accent the lead with clever rolls and strolls. Bittersweet and boisterous, "Ask Me Now" is pure Monk magic with a sharp, contemporary twist.

As for Friedman's compositions, all three are worthy of note and all three seem the perfect embodiments of their titles. The first, "Schmooze Blooze," is no less than a swinging dialogue between old friends; the second, "Half and Half," cunningly volleys from breakneck to jogging rhythms; and the third, a solo piano venture entitled "Summer's End," is delicate, earthy and autumnal.

A single listen of My Favorite Things will undoubtedly beget a second, a third, and eventually the hope that the trio of Friedman, Nash, and Mraz continues its pleasing output.

Track Listing

1 My Favorite Things 5:44 2 It Could Happen to You 7:05 3 Easy to Love 5:46 4 Ask Me Now 7:07 5 Schmooze Blooze 5:29 6 Never Let Me Go 7:30 7 Half and Half 3:34 8 I'm All Smiles 6:34 9 Giant Steps 3:56 10 Summer'd End 6:20

Personnel

Don Friedman: Piano; George Mraz: Bass; Lewis Nash: Drums.

Album information

Title: My Favorite Things | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: 441 Records

Post a comment about this album

Tags

View events near New York City
Jazz Near New York City
Events Guide | Venue Guide | Get App | More...

Shop Amazon

More

Read Hug!
Hug!
Matt Wilson Quartet
Read Touch & Go
Touch & Go
Susan Tobocman
Read The Ilkley Suite
The Ilkley Suite
Jamil Sheriff
Read Moving Through Worlds
Moving Through Worlds
Fiona Joy Hawkins
Read Data Lords
Data Lords
Maria Schneider Orchestra
Read Sleepy Town
Sleepy Town
Jamie Pregnell
Read Momento
Momento
Dave Milligan
Read Peace
Peace
Spirit Fingers

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
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.