Brad Mehldau Trio, Wed. May 16
Brad Mehldau Trio
Wednesday, May 16
“…admired as one of the most adventurous pianists to arrive on the jazz scene.” – LA Times
Over the past two decades, no artist has done more to extend and refine the piano trio’s possibilities than Brad Mehldau. With two brilliant Northern California-raised compatriots, bassist Larry Grenadier and (former Santa Cruzan) drummer Jeff Ballard, he’s forged a strikingly beautiful group sound distinguished by a flexible approach in which the players continuously trade roles, often eschewing traditional bass and drum solos while elaborating on the form of a song. His brand new Nonesuch release, Ode, is a ravishing collection of original music and his first studio recording with the trio in seven years.
Mehldau has been recording and performing extensively since the early 1990s, yet his most consistent output over the years has taken place in the trio format. Starting in 1996, his group released a series of five records on Warner Bros. entitled The Art of the Trio (recently re-released as a box set by Nonesuch Records in 2011). During that same period, Mehldau also released a solo piano recording entitled Elegiac Cycle, and a record called Places that included both solo piano and trio songs.
First and foremost an improviser, Mehldau greatly cherishes the surprise and wonder that can occur from a spontaneous musical idea expressed in real time. His deep fascination for the formal architecture of music is evident in his striking technical approach to the keys. In his most inspired playing, the structure of his playing becomes the ultimate expressive device, rather than a simple display of virtuosity.
In addition to his various trio and solo projects, Mehldau has worked with a veritable “who’s who” of great musicians, including Joshua Redman, Pat Metheny, Michael Brecker, Wayne Shorter, Willie Nelson and Joe Henry. Other career milestones include composing two commissioned voice/piano works for Carnegie Hall, which were performed in the spring of 2005 by acclaimed classical soprano Renee Fleming. And in 2008, Carnegie Hall again commissioned Mehldau to write a cycle of seven love songs for Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter. Whatever setting he is in, Mehldau never fails to delight and amaze, but with his trio in tow, the joy is nothing if not tripled.
High resolution photo: http://kuumbwajazz.org/media/press-photos/
Brad Mehldau Trio
DATE: Wednesday, May 16, 2012
PLACE: Kuumbwa Jazz Center
ADDRESS: 320 Cedar St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
TIMES: 7:00 and 9:00 PM
PRICE: $28/Adv $31/Door
TICKETS: Logos Books & Records, 1117 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz (831) 427-5100 and online at: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org
MORE INFO: http://www.kuumbwajazz.org or 831-427-2227
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