221

Jay D'Amico: Tuscan Prelude

By

Sign in to view read count
Tuscan Prelude is Jay D'Amico's fourth recording as a leader. Though talk of a combination of classical music and jazz might conjure up sonic images of the Modern Jazz Quartet, a comparison to John Lewis, wouldn't do credit to either D'Amico or Lewis, in spite of the fact that both have a fast, accurate, but delicate touch on the keys. Another pianist, however, whose approach might tangentially resemble D'Amico's could be Vince Guaraldi, both sharing a penchant for direct melodic simplicity. Yet D'Amico is an original. Even though there might be nods to other jazz pianists, he displays clearly increasing sophistication and refinement. For instance, "Theme in Bb minor" starts with a 12/8 Afro-Cuban feel transforming into a salsa rhythm, which changes into an up-tempo swing. All this rhythmic permutation takes place, organically, in a track that is less than four minutes long. The title track uses continually shifting tempos and a melodic dialogue between left and right hand to set the artistic thrust.

D'Amico's trio performance at New York's St. Joseph's in early October, 2008 was an unqualified success. The church, built in 1834, lent an air of "the old country" to the repertoire. It's difficult for a jazz band to play in rooms like churches but D'Amico and brother Greg (bass), with Vinnie Favatta (drums), played with great dynamic control. Despite the multi-faceted nature of many of the pieces, the musicians negotiated each change in dynamics, tempo and mood with effortless grace. In "E Lucevan Le Stelle," an arrangement of Puccini's aria from the opera La Boheme, the audience almost sang along. They later played another Puccini aria, "Nessun Dorma" (No one Sleeps), dedicating it to the late, great tenor Luciano Pavarotti. D'Amico also played his original compositions, "Earth Day Theme" and "The Judge's Decision" (for his mentor Milt Hinton), with the same passion and conviction as the 'time-tested' melodies of Puccini.

Track Listing: Tuscan Prelude; Theme in Bb minor; G minor Ballade; Fuga; Improvviso; Nocturne; Sonata Mvt.1; Mvt. 2; Mvt. 3; Prelude in A minor; Aria in D.

Personnel: Jay D'Amico: piano; Marc Johnson: bass; Ronnie Zito: drums.

Title: Tuscan Prelude | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Consolidated Artists Productions


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read "Sleight Of Hand" CD/LP/Track Review Sleight Of Hand
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 8, 2017
Read "The Last Sense To Leave Us – A Tribute To Pauline Oliveros" CD/LP/Track Review The Last Sense To Leave Us – A Tribute To Pauline...
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 10, 2017
Read "Dedication" CD/LP/Track Review Dedication
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: July 15, 2017
Read "Live! Rancho Nicasio" CD/LP/Track Review Live! Rancho Nicasio
by James Nadal
Published: June 7, 2017
Read "A Piece of the Apple" CD/LP/Track Review A Piece of the Apple
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 7, 2017
Read "Hybrido - From Rio To Wayne Shorter" CD/LP/Track Review Hybrido - From Rio To Wayne Shorter
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 12, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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