Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Bill Evans Trio - Portrait in Jazz

The classic Bill Evans trio recording featuring Scott LaFaro on bass and Paul Motian on drums, from Orrin Keepnews' Riverside Records. For those unfamiliar with Bill Evans, you'd never expect the clean-cut square staring at you on the cover to have some of the best jazz chops. Evans had just recorded Kind of Blue with Miles, and here we have two trio versions of Miles' composition "Blue in Green" from that album. I see Evans' style of soloing as so clean and precise but able to avoid being mechanical. Scott LaFaro, who died 2 years later at the age of 25, has some fantastic solos, moving liberally into the instrument's high register. The epitome of the era's piano trios.

1. Come Rain Or Come Shine
2. Autumn Leaves [Take 1]
3. Autumn Leaves [Take 2]
4. Witchcraft
5. When I Fall In Love
6. Peri's Scope
7. What Is This Thing Called Love?
8. Spring Is Here
9. Someday My Prince Will Come
10. Blue In Green [Take 3]
11. Blue In Green [Take 2]

Bill Evans, piano
Scott LaFaro, bass
Paul Motian, drums

Produced by Orrin Keepnews
Recorded in New York; December 28, 1959
Digital remastering, 1987 - David Luke (Fantasy Studios, Berkeley)


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