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The combination of Oscar Peterson, Ray Brown and Niels Pedersen in performance could well lead one to salivate at the prospect of listening to them play. It does, and as well, succeeds to a great extent. All three were on the marquee in Montreux in 1977, though not slated to play together. How that came to be is revealed in an interesting interview with Pedersen. It's enough to say that there was a bit of manipulation involved. That it worked deserved a tip of the hat to the manipulator or two.
Peterson opens with three quick solos, sweeping all with a swift tempo in a collective lesson of technical virtuosity. In the interview, Pedersen acknowledges with a twinkle in his eye, that Peterson was probably setting them up for what was to come. And he does, playing with a luminescence that creates whirling magical spells, a benevolence that often pays rich dividends. He is strong on the blues, and even gives "People" a deep rub of the hue. The fluidity and the dynamics that Brown brought in are the stuff that legend is made of, and legend comes alive in his exceptional motifs. Pedersen casts his own shadow, melody being his vantage take off point. Perhaps nothing illuminates that better than his solo on "There is no Greater Love."
Besides the interview with Pedersen, the extras comprise a presentation by Nat Hentoff, drawings by David Stone Martin and photographs by Georges Braunschweig. In the photos section, drummer Jimmie Smith is called Jimmy Smith and a picture of Ray Brown has been lumped in with those of Ray Bryant.
Track Listing: Falling in Love with Love; Old Folks; Indiana; There is no Greater Love; You Look Good to Me; People; Reunion Blues; Teach Me Tonight; Sweet Georgia Brown
As a kid, my mom told me I'd like jazz. I thought she was nuts. Then I went to hear Cannonball Adderley (with Nat Adderley, George Duke, Walter Booker, Roy McCurdy and Airto) and everything changed. Yeah, mom knows best.