Record of the Day: Oscar Peterson Trio, “Live from Chicago”

Oscar Peterson Trio
“Live from Chicago” (Cd Verve 539063-2)

If you’re in the growing category of those who stay in the city in August and enjoy a well-deserved vacation in September, here’s the perfect soundtrack to get you on the road.
Pianist Oscar Peterson’s extensive discography includes so many quality records that it’s difficult to pick out individual titles, but Live from Chicago is by far one of the best purchases you can make. Superbly remastered by Verve with the addition of five bonus tracks that push the 76-minute mark, the project sees this formidable trio tackle a night in which each of them gave their best.

If you know jazz, you know all about Peterson’s extraordinary technique and musicianship, a true piano colossus capable of scaling the most inaccessible virtuosic peaks but also being a sensitive accompanist who knows how to humbly and intelligently serve his colleagues.
The collaboration with bassist Ray Brown and drummer Ed Thigpen has provided countless opportunities to delight jazz fans during his long tenure, and this live album represents a special occasion thanks to the naturalness and skill with which the three reunite a compilation of famous standards, from “Whisper Not” to “Woody’N’You”, from “In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning” to “Sometimes I’m Happy” and “Billy Boy”.

It’s not easy to keep up with the energy of Peterson’s piano playing, which is sometimes so obvious that it threatens to overwhelm others, but Browne Thigpen knows their stuff and isn’t afraid, in fact he seems to enjoy encouraging Peterson to give more more. stirring it up in constant variations and piano excursions that leave you stunned by its beauty and improvisational prowess. Excitement and pure enjoyment of playing are the main features of this concert, which the excellent recording faithfully conveys directly to the London House hall in Chicago.

The excitement of the audience in front of such a sonic wonder is palpable and invites the musicians to push the gas pedal even more, ending the concert with an excellent version of “Daahoud”, composed by Clifford Brown, to which the musicians pay tribute. with the best possible way.

Carlo Boccadoro, composer and conductor, was born in Macerata in 1963. He lives and works in Milan. He collaborates with soloists and orchestras in various parts of the world. He is the author of several books on musical subjects.

This text comes from “Music Moon: A Record for Every Day of the Year” Einaudi edition, courtesy of the author and publisher.

Winston Ferguson

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