One of the most revealing and personal experiences in jazz is an opportunity to see and hear an artist during a live solo performance. In every aspect of one's eclectic realm of musical enjoyment, that moment is the single most excursion into the intuitive creative spirit that comes from within. Watching a musician in a live setting without studio embellishments or gimmicks involved creates an atmosphere in which the artist and the audience come together in an intimately close and personal setting. Very few individuals have the chops or the necessary where with all to pull a performance of that magnitude off, especially when conveying the outcome of such an event in a recorded format. But when done correctly, that brand of jazz is one of the most unique forms of entertainment on any level. One musician in particular has demonstrated the necessary attributes to enthuse as well as mesmerize jazz connoisseurs in a very delightful manner.
Pianist/composer Fred Hersch has become one of those rare jazz artists who has not only created a unique listening experience with his music, he has also added a texturized aesthetic approach to his craft. His place in jazz as one of the finest artists around today has placed him in high demand professionally. Fred's latest CD entitled In Amsterdam: Live At The Bimhuis on the Palmetto Record Label fits into the realm of classic jazz at its best. This CD is reminiscent of days when venues such as Small's, The Village Vanguard, 52nd Street, The Savoy and The Eldorado Ballroom featured this style of jazz regularly, especially the type found in In Amsterdam: Live At The Bimhuis. On Fred's latest release, his ability to reinvent the art of classic jazz to another level without compromising his insightful ideas and exemplary talent is phenomenal. In addition, when it comes to interpreting great bodies of work, Fred Hersch is one who has become quite adept at making it look simple.
On In Amsterdam: Live At The Bimhuis, Fred takes a retrospective look at some of the works of Antonio Carlos Jobim, Thelonious Monk, Jimmy Rowles, Hoagy Carmichael and himself. Hersh's sensual treatment of classic nuances is accomplished with improvised sensitivity. Throughout eight prolific tracks gleaned from previous live settings, Hersch has drawn upon an imaginative approach to convey his intuitive thought processes. Either way or down whatever avenue he has chosen, Fred Hersch has taken an up-close and personal perspective on some of the best classic jazz ever recorded. Overall, In Amsterdam: Live At The Bimhuis ranks high on the menu of quality entertainment from one of the genre's best interpreters of classic jazz.