483

Keith Jarrett / Gary Peacock / Jack DeJohnette: My Foolish Heart

Budd Kopman By

Sign in to view read count
Keith Jarrett / Gary Peacock / Jack DeJohnette: My Foolish Heart Pianist Keith Jarrett's career practically invites criticism or, at the very least, intense comment. His outspokenness, his utter seriousness of intent and the resulting love-hate relationship with the audience, even his vocalisms, evoke strong responses, both pro and con, from listeners.

As the years have gone by, expectations have continued to rise, almost to the point that no matter what he does, Jarrett will fail in someone's eyes, and My Foolish Heart is no exception. However, the only issue that really matters is this: does he and, by extension, the trio, communicate with and connect to the listener?

ECM has released this double-CD live recording from the 2001 Montreux Jazz Festival as a sort of now-to-then comparison to the upcoming release Setting The Standards: New York Sessions 1983, which will mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of this trio in 2008. Any Jarrett release is an event and, when combined with Jarrett's liner notes which talk about how special this performance was, practically promises a revelatory listening experience.

Revelation is, however, a very personal thing. Since this music consists of well-known standards the magic, if it is to be found, will not be in new sounds, but in the details of the performance for those who can, or desire to, hear them.

The best jazz is the music of spontaneous, unexpected creation. It requires dynamic energy and concentration plus the seeming contradictory ability to let go, forgetting all the technique and theory and just playing. In this case, what is to be played starts with the tunes themselves, with melody. A standard is labeled as such because its construction has achieved the delicate balance between the melodic phrasing and harmony that creates something unique, and being immediately identifiable and memorable.

To treat such a creation as mere changes is to violate its sanctity, and true improvisation will maintain contact, however tenuous, with the source of the inspiration. In this respect, Jarrett is masterful and there is nary a moment on any track when it is not obvious which tune is being played. The changes are respected, but so are the melody and emotional essence of the tune, with Jarrett using the musical language of conventional bebop jazz.

Bassist Gary Peacock and drummer Jack DeJohnette, acknowledged masters in their own right, obviously know Jarrett and each other extremely well. Any given performance can vary, but this one does seem to find this rhythm section in top form. DeJohnette's famous energy is controlled but white hot while Peacock, whose solos are short but meaningful, adds a delightful bounce and verve.

The trio is playing as one and this is the joy of the performance. The surprise comes with the three stride tunes, "Ain't Misbehavin,'" "Honeysuckle Rose" and "You Took Advantage Of Me," and if anyone was waiting for a reason to gush about this performance, it is here.

Place it where you will in Jarrett's discography, My Foolish Heart is true jazz artistry.

Track Listing: CD1: Four; My Foolish Heart; Oleo; What's New; The Song is You; Ain't Misbehavin'. CD2: Honeysuckle Rose; You Took Advantage of Me; Straight, No Chaser; Five Brothers; Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out to Dry; On Green Dolphin Street; Only the Lonely.

Personnel: Keith Jarrett: piano; Gary Peacock: double-bass; Jack DeJohnette: drums.

Title: My Foolish Heart | Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: ECM Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends CD/LP/Track Review Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Heaven On Their Minds CD/LP/Track Review Heaven On Their Minds
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Unnatural  Events CD/LP/Track Review Unnatural Events
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Rediscovered Ellington CD/LP/Track Review Rediscovered Ellington
by James Nadal
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Clean CD/LP/Track Review Clean
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 15, 2017
Read Expedition: Duo Electro-Acoustic Improvisations CD/LP/Track Review Expedition: Duo Electro-Acoustic Improvisations
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 15, 2017
Read "Louisiana Soul Revival Featuring Doug Duffey" CD/LP/Track Review Louisiana Soul Revival Featuring Doug Duffey
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: November 21, 2016
Read "Reimagined" CD/LP/Track Review Reimagined
by Mark Sullivan
Published: July 8, 2017
Read "Sanctuary" CD/LP/Track Review Sanctuary
by Budd Kopman
Published: November 16, 2016
Read "Passin' Thru" CD/LP/Track Review Passin' Thru
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 20, 2017
Read "Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs" CD/LP/Track Review Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs
by John Eyles
Published: January 21, 2017
Read "Proverbe" CD/LP/Track Review Proverbe
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 15, 2017

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.