It's been a while since the last post. Sorry about that. A summer vacation and life in general got in the way. But now I'm back after a long hot summer. Sitting here at home with a sore throat and aching muscles; the first cold of the season. But I'm keeping my spirits up with the album on display here. This has got to be the greatest piano trio album of all time, together with Sunday at the Village Vanguard on Riverside 376, which I've also acquired recently. There are really no other piano trio albums that can match these live sessions from 1961, recorded superbly by Riverside. They are in a league of their own. It feels like you are there in that club, relaxing at a table with a drink, when you listen to these albums. They really captured the live feeling amazingly well.
Much of the magic bassist Scott LaFaro brings to the table. His playing on these albums is truly one of a kind. Probably the best double bass I've ever heard. So what does that make him, the best jazz double bassist of all time? Despite his very short career? For me, the answer is yes. This trio had such an amazing feeling and flow. LaFaro was given a lot of space and could really express himself. I believe LaFaro made this trio so magical. Bill Evans is superb and Paul Motian plays great and has a sweet touch. But the star is LaFaro. Without him it wouldn't be the same. The concept of this trio though, where the double bass gets so much room and where the interplay between all three members is so profound, is pure genius.
My copy of this masterpiece on RLP 399 is in wonderful shape and sounds excellent. One of my absolute favorite albums for sure. Like I mentioned, I've acquired Sunday at the Village Vanguard on RLP 376 as well. Recorded live the same day as RLP 399. A white label promo copy which should have been in better condition than it was when I received it. I can listen to it, but it has far too much pops and tics for my taste. I couldn't return it, which was a bummer. But my mission now is to not buy another album until I find another copy of RLP 376 in much better, satisfactory condition. I think that's a healthy approach. Very cool though to have a promo copy of that title.
I thought it would be interesting what you guys think of these Vanguard recordings and if you, like me, think they are the best piano trio recordings ever made. Also, in your opinion, is Scott LaFaro one of the best if not THE best jazz double bassists of all time? If not, do you have another favorite? Love to hear what you guys think regarding these matters.
Autumn will soon be here for real and the time for candles, stouts and jazz piano trios that comes with it. And what better jazz piano trio to put on the turntable than the Bill Evans Trio live from the Village Vanguard. Stay tuned for more jazz vinyl from the collection and have a great weekend. Cheers...!