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Live at The Concertgebouw 1961

Oscar Peterson Trio

Live at The Concertgebouw 1961

Price: € 19.95
Format: CD
Label: Fondamenta
UPC: 0889853901227
Catnr: FON 1604023
Release date: 03 November 2017
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Label
Fondamenta
UPC
0889853901227
Catalogue number
FON 1604023
Release date
03 November 2017

"Of course, the focus is on Peterson's clear and virtuosic playing, his music is lyrical without slipping into sentimentality, his touch sounds so easy that the fun of playing is dripping off."

Rootstime, 08-12-2017
Album
Artist(s)
Composer(s)
Press
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About the album

10 February 1961: Norman Granz stepped on to the Concertgebouw stage to present one of the finest concerts from the Jazz at the Philharmonic series he organized. He introduced Oscar Peterson, his protégé since 1949. The pianist was always keen to play in this hall, renowned for its extraordinary acoustics, resonating with the performances of the classic musicians he so loved. Aged 35, at the pinnacle of his extraordinary technical skills and at the peak of his fame, the pianist seemed to have nothing more to prove. As the decade opened, the pianist was a byword for elegance, modesty and joyfulness.

It was at the initiative of producer and impresario Norman Granz that, for the very first time in 1952, the legendary hall of the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam opened its doors to music other than the classics. Afro-American, popular music was still too often considered “illegitimate” in the ears of many distinguished music lovers. But jazz was an immediate success, and after that the venerable institution welcomed jazz musicians to give concerts scheduled around midnight in their large hall. The Canadian pianist Oscar Peterson was, of course, one of the great stars tasked with spreading the good word of swing to Europe. Throughout the 1950s, the stars of jazz played at the Concertgebouw on many occasions. He was a lover of classical music from Bach to Rachmaninov, and an erudite one at that. It is likely that the Verve label, wanting to make the most of the legitimacy that came with performing in such a prestigious concert hall, brought out a record entitled Oscar Peterson Trio at the Concertgebouw in 1957. And although Peterson actually played in Amsterdam that year with Ray Brown and Herb Ellis, the album proved to be a fake, comprising excerpts of concerts recorded in far less prestigious halls in Chicago and Los Angeles.

Peterson, unanimously considered as a phenomenon of the keyboard who had succeeded in achieving a synthesis between the masters of classical piano jazz even as he integrated the influence of artists in transition whose status was not that easy to pin down, he won over enlightened amateurs and newcomers to jazz with his radiant, virtuoso and charmingly light music. Although everything around him was trembling on its foundations, battered by the free jazz that was emerging, Peterson’s music, serene and free of showy moodiness, embodied the permanence of a certain golden age of jazz. It seemed sheltered from the vicissitudes of time and the aesthetic upheavals prefigured by the revolutions that were taking place. Yet, even if it seemed impossible to change a style that had reached maturity and appeared entrenched in its perfection, Peterson reached a particularly creative period in his career. He had spent most of the 1950s taking the orchestral formation of piano, bass and guitar, created by Art Tatum and transformed into myth by Nat King Cole, to the pinnacle of refinement and organic cohesion. He had recently formed a particularly tightly wrought new trio, modifying considerably the orchestral dynamics in which his piano had to fit, and integrating the subtle beat of the great percussionist Ed Thigpen next to bass player Ray Brown, his faithful partner since the early 1950s.

After two years of touring the world the trio was on top form and the quality of the sound is on a par with their music.

10. Februar 1961: Norman Granz tritt auf die Bühne des Concertgebouw, um eines der schönsten Konzerte der von ihm organisierten Jazzreihe der Philharmonie zu präsentieren. Er stellte Oscar Peterson vor, seinen Schützling seit 1949. Der Pianist war immer daran interessiert, in diesem Saal zu spielen, der für seine außergewöhnliche Akustik bekannt ist und mit den Auftritten der klassischen Musiker, die er so sehr liebte, mitschwingt. Mit 35 Jahren, auf dem Höhepunkt seiner außergewöhnlichen technischen Fähigkeiten und auf dem Gipfel seines Ruhmes, schien der Pianist nichts mehr beweisen zu müssen. Zu Beginn des Jahrzehnts stand er für Eleganz, Bescheidenheit und Freude.
Auf Initiative des Produzenten und Impresarios Norman Granz öffnete der legendäre Saal des Amsterdamer Concertgebouw 1952 zum ersten Mal seine Pforten für andere Musik als die Klassik. Afro-amerikanische, populäre Musik galt in den Ohren vieler angesehener Musikliebhaber noch zu oft als "illegitim". Aber der Jazz war sofort ein Erfolg und danach begrüßte die ehrwürdige Institution Jazzmusiker, die um Mitternacht in ihrem großen Saal Konzerte geben sollten. Der kanadische Pianist Oscar Peterson war natürlich einer der großen Stars, um das Motto des Swing in Europa bekannt zu machen. In den 1950er Jahren spielten die Stars des Jazz mehrfach im Concertgebouw. Peterson war ein Liebhaber der klassischen Musik von Bach bis Rachmaninov und ein Kenner. Es wurde angenommen, dass das Label Verve, unter Nutzung der Legitimität der Auftritte in einem so renommierten Konzertsaal, 1957 im Concertgebouw eine Platte mit dem Titel Oscar Peterson Trio herausbrachte. Und obwohl Peterson in Amsterdam mit Ray Brown und Herb Ellis spielte, erwies sich das Album als eine Fälschung, die aus Ausschnitten von Konzerten bestand, die in weitaus weniger prestigeträchtigen Sälen in Chicago und Los Angeles aufgenommen wurden.
Peterson, ein Phänomen der Klaviatur in Hinblick auf die Synthese zwischen den Meistern des klassischen Klavierjazz, auch wenn er den Einfluss von Künstlern im Umbruch in sich vereinte, hat mit seiner strahlenden, virtuosen und charmant leichten Musik aufgeklärte Amateure und Jazz-Neulinge für sich gewinnen können. Obwohl alles um ihn herum in seinen Fundamenten zitterte, vom entstehenden Free Jazz erschüttert, verkörpert Petersons Musik, gelassen und frei von auffälliger Launenhaftigkeit, die Dauerhaftigkeit eines gewissen goldenen Zeitalters des Jazz. Sie schien vor den Wechselfällen der Zeit und den ästhetischen Umwälzungen geschützt, die durch die Revolutionen eingeleitet wurden. Doch auch wenn es unmöglich schien, einen Stil zu ändern, der zur Reife gekommen war und in seiner Perfektion erstarrt zu sein schien, so hat Peterson in seiner Karriere doch eine besonders schöpferische Phase erreicht. Er verbrachte die meisten der 1950er Jahre damit, die Orchesterformation von Klavier, Bass und Gitarre, die von Art Tatum geschaffen wurde und sich in den Mythos von Nat King Cole verwandelte, zu einem Gipfelpunkt der Raffinesse und des organischen Zusammenhalts zu machen. Er hatte vor kurzem ein besonders straff gestricktes neues Trio gebildet, das die orchestrale Dynamik, in die sein Klavier hineinpassen musste, wesentlich modifizierte und den subtilen Beat des großen Schlagzeugers Ed Thigpen neben dem Bassisten Ray Brown, seinem treuen Partner seit Anfang der 1950er Jahre, integrierte.
Nach zwei Jahren Welttournee war das Trio in Bestform und die Klangqualität auf Augenhöhe mit ihrer Musik.

Artist(s)

Oscar Peterson (piano)

Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the mid- to late '40s and fell somewhere between swing and bop. Peterson was criticized through the years because he used so many notes, didn't evolve much since the 1950s, and recorded a remarkable number of albums. Perhaps it is because critics ran out of favorable adjectives to use early in his...
more
Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the mid- to late '40s and fell somewhere between swing and bop. Peterson was criticized through the years because he used so many notes, didn't evolve much since the 1950s, and recorded a remarkable number of albums. Perhaps it is because critics ran out of favorable adjectives to use early in his career; certainly it can be said that Peterson played 100 notes when other pianists might have used ten, but all 100 usually fit, and there is nothing wrong with showing off technique when it serves the music. As with Johnny Hodges and Thelonious Monk, to name two, Peterson spent his career growing within his style rather than making any major changes once his approach was set, certainly an acceptable way to handle one's career. Because he was Norman Granz's favorite pianist (along with Tatum) and the producer tended to record some of his artists excessively, Peterson made an incredible number of albums. Not all are essential, and a few are routine, but the great majority are quite excellent, and there are dozens of classics.

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Ed Thigpen (drums)

Ray Brown (double bass)

Composer(s)

Oscar Peterson (piano)

Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the mid- to late '40s and fell somewhere between swing and bop. Peterson was criticized through the years because he used so many notes, didn't evolve much since the 1950s, and recorded a remarkable number of albums. Perhaps it is because critics ran out of favorable adjectives to use early in his...
more
Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the mid- to late '40s and fell somewhere between swing and bop. Peterson was criticized through the years because he used so many notes, didn't evolve much since the 1950s, and recorded a remarkable number of albums. Perhaps it is because critics ran out of favorable adjectives to use early in his career; certainly it can be said that Peterson played 100 notes when other pianists might have used ten, but all 100 usually fit, and there is nothing wrong with showing off technique when it serves the music. As with Johnny Hodges and Thelonious Monk, to name two, Peterson spent his career growing within his style rather than making any major changes once his approach was set, certainly an acceptable way to handle one's career. Because he was Norman Granz's favorite pianist (along with Tatum) and the producer tended to record some of his artists excessively, Peterson made an incredible number of albums. Not all are essential, and a few are routine, but the great majority are quite excellent, and there are dozens of classics.

less

Press

Of course, the focus is on Peterson's clear and virtuosic playing, his music is lyrical without slipping into sentimentality, his touch sounds so easy that the fun of playing is dripping off.
Rootstime, 08-12-2017

The albums have been exceptionally well-edited, with pleasantly felt cardboard covers and luxuriously executed booklets. The fitting name for this special series is 'The Lost Recordings'.
Jazzenzo, 02-12-2017

It remains a miracle of ingenuity how this trio, with Ray Brown as always sure anchor, never misses a turn. I call that: 'being home in the matter' and 'responding flexibly to new choices of fellow musicians'. Essential qualities of a good jazz musician.
JazzFlits, 15-11-2017

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Often bought together with..

On a Clear Day: The Oscar Peterson Trio - Live in Zurich, 1971
Oscar Peterson
Piano Concertos Op. 58 & Op. 61
Nino Gvetadze | Phíon | Benjamin Levy
Live in Rotterdam 1967
Thelonious Monk
The Solo Fantasias
Saskia Coolen / Shunske Sato / Rainer Zipperling
Live at Laren Jazz Festival 1975
Sarah Vaughan
Live At The Kurhaus 1967
Dave Brubeck Quartet

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