Play Blue - Oslo Concert

Paul Bley

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Format: CD

Cat No: 3766190

Release Date:  31 March 2014

Label:  ECM

Packaging Type:  Jewel Case

No of Units:  1

Barcode:  602537661909

Genres:  Jazz  Contemporary  

  • Description

    A rare solo performance by one of jazz's great originals, Canadian pianist Paul Bley, recorded live at the Oslo Jazz Festival in 2008 by Jan Erik Kongshaug and Manfred Eicher. Here Bley, encouraged by an attentive and enthusiastic Norwegian audience shapes music in the moment, plays his own compositions, and brings the music to a fine conclusion in a performance of Sonny Rollins's "Pent-Up House".

    There is nothing else quite like a Paul Bley concert. As the New York Times noted, "Mr. Bley long ago found a way to express his long, elegant, voluminous thoughts in a manner that implies complete autonomy from its given setting but isn't quite free jazz. The music runs on a mixture of deep historical knowledge and its own inviolable principles."

    The solo medium is one that Bley first broached on ECM. The 1972 recording Open, To Love was to prove one of the defining works in the unaccompanied genre, and at least as influential in its way as Paul's classic jazz trio albums of the 1960s - such as Footloose!, Touching, Closer - had been. 35 years would elapse before the release of a 'sequel' at ECM, Solo at Mondsee, with Bley's kaleidoscopic transformations of standard themes in a series of variations.

    Bley's vision of musical freedom - as Play Blue again makes plain - is inclusive. Even at the height of the 1960s free jazz movement, Bley argued that the aesthetics of earlier jazz could and should be incorporated by a revolutionary art form. His discography and his live appearances have made the case ever since, with radical, intelligent music whose phrases can reference the blues or bebop, Berg or Bird, Ayler and atonality. In or out of the tradition he still sounds like irreducible Bley in every line. His touch is instantly recognisable.

    Personnel: Paul Bley (piano)

  • Tracklisting

      Disc 1

      Side 1

      • 1. Far North
      • 2. Way Down South Suite
      • 3. Flame
      • 4. Longer
      • 5. Pent-Up House