'Paris', by Brad Mehldau

I don’t own or listen to a lot of contemporary jazz myself, so I’m a little outside my comfort zone here, but Brad Mehldau (1970) often uses tones that touch (or should I say ‘hit’) me.

This solo track ‘Paris’ is ‘a piece of transcendental beauty. It starts with a deep, delicate melody, that continuously grows and expands until exploding into a shocking, rock-classical arpeggio (a mix of Radiohead and Rachmaninoff…)’.

The 11 compositions on ‘Places’ (from 2000, on some tracks with bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jorge Rossy)  were conceived on the road, and only midway through did Mehldau realize that there was a connection. The designated theme is travel; each selection bears the name of a place or mood.

The titles in themselves mean nothing as far as the content of the music is concerned, or so he writes in another lengthy, provocative liner note. Rather, the album is about the constancy of his personality and musical language, taking all of your personal mental baggage with you wherever you travel.

(P.S. I’ve posted this track earlier, on November 19th 2010, but I thought it would fit nice in the Paris-theme-week)

Brad Mehldau - Piano

Brad Mehldau - Places

'Corleone', by Eric Vloeimans' Fugimundi

Time for some Holland promotion: a beautiful, haunting piece by trumpeter Eric Vloeimans (born 1963), one of the main Dutch jazz figures.

After studying jazz at the Rotterdam Academy of Music, he continued his studies in New York , playing with Donald Byrd and the big bands of Frank Foster and Mercer Ellington.

In 2009 he went touring in America with his unusual, drum-free trio Fugimundi, and this set was recorded in Yoshi’s Jazz Club in Oakland, California.
Vloeimans conducted his program of originals and a lone standard in a most sensual, sparse, chamber music-style that is as striking as it is introspective.

Eric Vloeimans - Live At Yoshi's

'Corleone' is Godfather-inspired in a chamber-like framework and a calm-before-the-storm motif is established which is utterly foreboding. Please allow the song to 'develop', and wait for the trumpet to kick in.

Such beauty and drama!

Eric Vloeimans - Trumpet
Anton Goudsmit - Guitar
Harmen Fraanje - Piano

'Paris', by Brad Mehldau

I don’t own or listen to a lot of contemporary jazz myself, so I’m a little outside my comfort zone here, but Brad Mehldau (1970) often uses tones that touch (or should I say ‘hit’) me.

This solo track ‘Paris’ is ‘a piece of transcendental beauty. It starts with a deep, delicate melody, that continuously grows and expands until exploding into a shocking, rock-classical arpeggio (a mix of Radiohead and Rachmaninoff…)’.

The 11 compositions on ‘Places’ (from 2000, on some tracks with bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jorge Rossy)  were conceived on the road, and only midway through did Mehldau realize that there was a connection. The designated theme is travel; each selection bears the name of a place or mood.

The titles in themselves mean nothing as far as the content of the music is concerned, or so he writes in another lengthy, provocative liner note. Rather, the album is about the constancy of his personality and musical language, taking all of your personal mental baggage with you wherever you travel.


Brad Mehldau, Places