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Francesco Maccianti’s new solo effort is an intelligent and uplifting album, rooted in the best of the classic post-bop tradition. Occasionally, the pianist pays his dues to Keith Jarrett’s Atlantic years and, often, to McCoy Tyner’s mid-1960 s dates. But Oasi bears all the classy signs of a hard-working quartet exploring the moody grooves and swing that Maccianti’s forthright piano style affords.
Maccianti ( b. 1956) surrounds himself with the world-class support of Lello Pareti on bass and Walter Paoli on drums and tops it off with Pietro Tonolo’s perfectly-focused sax playing. The four explore a great melodic sensibility and invest in strong interplay here, particularly during "Love For Sale." But Oasi ’s best moments are Maccianti’s originals: "Piramidi," a geometric mix of theme and feeling that’s never wronged by its bittersweetness and "Cristalli Mulatti," an intriguing study of crisis, built simply from a solo piano, then resolved among the group’s melodic sensitivity.
Like a storyteller, Maccianti informs as he instructs, and entertains as he educates. Indeed, Maccianti was my own piano teacher twenty-some years ago and the one, I’m grateful to say, who introduced me to jazz. Today, he is considered a leading figure in contemporary Italian jazz, a well-respected artist and often quoted as one of the best contemporary " young " Italian talents. Oasi proves that he is all this and more. A fine album that leaves one hoping for more...soon!
Track Listing: Oasi (Francesco Maccianti ); Il Mare Placato (Francesco Maccianti ); Love For Sale ( Cole Porter); So in Love (Cole Porter); What Is ? ( Pietro Tonolo ); The Nearness Of You ( Washington--Carmichael ); Piramidi ( Francesco Maccianti ); Cristalli Mulatti ( Francesco Maccianti );You And The Night And The Music ( Schawarz--Dietz ); Eu E A Brisa ( Johnny Alf ).
Personnel: Francesco Maccianti: piano; Walter Paoli – drums; Lello Pareti--acoustic bass; Pietro Tonolo--soprano and tenor sax; Fulvio Sisti--vocals ( 6 & 10 ).
I love jazz because it mixes intellect and emotion in a very spontaneous way.
I was first exposed to jazz by liberating a Coltrane and a Pharoah Sanders record from a friend in NYC and listening to them over and over until I got it.
My advice to new listeners is you have to take the time to listen to some jazz tunes a number of times until it starts to make sense.