A top jazz piano trio album, perhaps my favorite to date.

I started this morning with a dose of Art Pepper. Side 2 of Modern Art on Intro. A nice way to get this beautiful Saturday afternoon on track. A bit of interesting information; the alto intro on the tune "Stompin' at the Savoy" is a bit longer on this original 1st pressing than on other issues or formats I believe. Don't know about the Score issue. On other issues, it seems that the unaccompanied alto solo in the beginning of "Stompin'..." has been cut shorter. That's pretty cool, to think that you actually need the original pressing to get to hear that, as it was supposed to be. Just another reason to stick to 1st pressings.

It's been a while since I posted last. I've been on vacation to California with the family. But let's get things going here again...

My relation to piano trios in jazz has grown very strong in the last couple of years. I truly dig that format, even though if I would choose one record to take with me to a desert island, it would probably have a horn or two on it. One of the best jazz piano trio albums I've heard to date is the one on display, Bill Evan's "Portrait in Jazz" on Riverside 315. It's a 1st pressing in nice shape. The cover is a bit worn but the vinyl is in M- condition. Sounds phenomenal. The drum sound for example is some of the best I've heard. Every detail is clear. You really need these kind of delicate, quieter albums to have the vinyl in top condition, so nothing distracts from the smooth tones of, in this case, the piano master Bill Evans. To be honest I haven't dug deep into his catalogue as of yet, but this album is a perfect way to start. I've listened to some other early stuff as well, and it's very good indeed.

This is just the first of many Bill Evans records to find their way into my collection I would think. The rhythm section is one of the best I've heard with Scott LaFaro on double bass and Paul Motian on drums. They gel unbelievably well together and also gel and compliments Bill Evans with 100% feeling and accuracy. I would say, if you're just starting to appreciate jazz piano in trio form, then this is the album to pick up. It's so smooth and flowing, and with a superb sound mix. Jack Higgins was the engineer on this. What a great job he did, flawless. Right now, as I write this, I've just put on Side 2, and what a smokin' tune, it's "What is This Thing Called Love?". I really feel that I want to invest in some other piano trio albums. This LP just makes you forget about horns of all kinds. It's that good. I have a few on the list that comes to mind, for example Tommy Flanagan's "Overseas" on Prestige and the Sonny Clark Trio on Blue Note. Also, some more early Bill Evans on Riverside is really appealing.

I'll look forward to the autumn with great joy, cause I have some real gems waiting for me. I will soon be able to purchase the first one. It's a wonderful, rare album. Tune in for that. But I will put up some other stuff from the collection in the mean time. Stay cool in the shade, sip on a cold one and listen to some jazz. Enjoy your weekend. Cheers.