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Recorded at the Japanese Blue Note nightclub in November 1997, Trio In Tokyo documents the end of a brief and extraordinary life. Michel Petrucciani was born with a rare bone disease that severely inhibited his growth and took his life last year. But what he lacked in height, he more than made up for in expression. The pianist debuted at 17 with Clark Terry and Kenny Clarke in France. What Americans most remember about him was his presence in the emergent career of Charles Lloyd. Part Bill Evans, part Keith Jarrett, his enthusiastic piano earned him a loyal fan base. In his short 20 years in the spotlight, he recorded seven albums for Blue Note, the highlight being Power Of Three, a trio with Wayne Shorter and Jim Hall. The last years of his life were spent in France, recording for Dreyfus jazz.
This live date finds him with his longtime bandmates Steve Gadd and Anthony Jackson (I could have done without his electrified bass). The music is all Petrucciani’s except an excursion into Miles Davis’ “So What.” Petrucciani plays like a man beholden to only melody. His sound could probably sum up jazz at the end of the 20th century. It was an amalgamation of all things post-Bill Evans, a time when jazz had no impact on popular culture and turned inward for acceptance. Petrucciani played for an audience of devotees. He will be missed.
Track List:Training; September Second; Home; Little Peace In C For U; Love Letter; Cantabile; Colors; So What.
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me. If we don't run a review, Alligator Records is going to stop servicing us.
Night Flight opened up a whole new world for me--the blues led me, inevitably, to Basie, who led to Duke, who led to Mingus, who led to Miles, who led to ...