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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier Trio: Bach: The Brandenburgs

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With his trio, pianist Jacques Loussier has interpreted classical works in a straight-ahead jazz setting for over four decades. He made quite an impression in 1960 with the Play Bach Trio and has never looked back. Newer trios have developed under his direction, letting the practice of reinterpreting classical music in a jazz vein grow prolifically.

The music of J.S. Bach has much in common with modern jazz. There's considerable freedom, changes in mood and tempo, and a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier Trio: Mozart Piano Concertos 20/23

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Jacques Loussier clangs musical genera together like an orchestral cymbalist reaching crescendo. After having weaved his way through Bach, Chopin, Handel and Satie, maestro Loussier turns his attention to Mozart's 250th birthday. For this celebration, Loussier ambitiously chooses the Piano Concertos in D minor (No. 20, K.466) and A major (No. 23, K. 488) for a jazz excursion. The pianist employs his classic piano trio, augmented by a string orchestra. The results, while mixed, still demand hearing, as do Loussier's ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier: Allegretto From Symphony No. 7: Themes And Variations

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Oh, the joys of depressing music.

Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 is one of the finest “downer" compositions ever and a collection of jazz variations on it seems like a can't-miss prospect. The base material is so strong it's like a prime steak--hard to go wrong no matter how it's treated (unless, egad, someone boils it).

Pianist Jacques Loussier has spent more than forty years playing classical variations, so there's little chance of Allegretto From Symphony No. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

The Jacques Loussier Trio: Handel

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The finest in Jazz interpretation of the Classical Canon...

Classical music adapted to the jazz medium is nothing new. Pianist Uri Caine spent much of the past four years doing so with the music of Wagner, Schumann, Bach, and Mahler . Currently, the Classical Jazz Quartet (comprised of Kenny Barron, Ron Carter, Stefon Harris, and Lewis Nash) has released two recordings interpreting classical pieces, The Classical Jazz Quartet Plays Bach and The Nutcracker . But long before all of these, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier: Bach's Goldberg Variations

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Jacques Loussier and his trio are back once again, interpreting the music of Johann Sebastian Bach in this new release on the Telarc label entitled Bach's Goldberg Variations. I had high praise for Loussier in my reviews of his two previous Telarc releases; Bolero and The Bach Book. In the history books, Loussier will certainly be looked upon as a major figure in the development of the genre crossover; his 1959 album Play Bach Trio may have been the first ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier Trio: The Bach Book

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Remember those old Reese's peanut butter cup commercials that had the two guys, one with a jar of peanut butter, the other with a chocolate bar, crashing into each other? After the one guy gets his chocolate bar stuck in the other guy's peanut butter, he quips “ you got peanut butter on my chocolate “ the other guy retorting “ you got chocolate in my peanut butter." A fortuitous accident to be sure, because when the two realize what ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier Trio: Ravels' Bolero

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As with his CD The Bach Book , Jacques Loussier is again embellishing the work of another master composer on this recent Telarc release entitled Ravel's Bolero. This CD is as much, and even more so about Loussier's own compositional abilities, for with the exception of the title cut, all songs were composed and arranged by Loussier.As great a record as the Bach Book is, Bolero easily surpasses it on many different levels. Maybe it's the fact that ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier Trio: Ravels' Bolero

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As with his CD The Bach Book , Jacques Loussier is again embellishing the work of another master composer on this recent Telarc release entitled Ravel's Bolero. This CD is as much, and even more so about Loussier's own compositional abilities, for with the exception of the title cut, all songs were composed and arranged by Loussier.As great a record as the Bach Book is, Bolero easily surpasses it on many different levels. Maybe it's the fact that ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jacques Loussier: The Four Seasons

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For nearly four decades now, French pianist and composer Jacques Loussier has been issuing peerless jazz versions of Bach's multifaceted music. Although that may sound like a novelty (remember Bachbusters?), Loussier understands both idioms well and is partial to no one particular genre, as he also includes touches of rock and the avant-garde in his style too. Loussier makes a successful case for defining music as simply music without pigeonholing it into genre. He often conjures images of John Lewis ...


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