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Live ’64 - ’75 by Bill Evans

The heralded Jazz Icons DVD series, featuring historical full-length performances of jazz legends, presents a stunning retrospective of the late pianist Bill Evans (1929-1980) covering an eleven-year span, featuring four different all-star trio configurations. Collected from the archives of European television broadcasts, Evans is heard at the height of his creative powers between the years 1964 and 1975.

Evans' classical inspired harmonic concept and subtle swinging is featured throughout on lush ballads ("My Foolish Heart," "Alfie," "Round Midnight") and up-tempo numbers ("Israel," "My Melancholy Baby"). The later performances from 1970 and '75 feature Evans' original compositions such as "Re: Person I Knew," "Sareen Jurer" and "Blue Surge." Some of the more inspired moments come from the two 1970 concerts with bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Marty Morrell. Here Evans propels the trio forward with unrelenting intensity on "Emily" and "Someday My Prince Will Come."

Evans was known for hiring ground-breaking bassists with incomparable technique and intuitive sensitivity and the personalities featured on this collection, Chuck Israels, Neils-Henning Orsted Pedersen and Gomez, are all legendary contributors to the instrument. Drummers Larry Bunker, Alan Dawson, Morrell and Eliot Zigmund all swing incredibly hard with magnificent brush work. Alto Saxophonist Lee Konitz makes a guest appearance on "My Melancholy Baby" from a 1965 performance in France.

Superb audio and video, as well as an intensive twenty-four page booklet make this DVD an essential item for anyone interested in first-rate piano trio jazz.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Bill Evans
  • CD Title: Live ’64 - ’75
  • Genre: Straight-Ahead / Classic
  • Year Released: 2008
  • Record Label: Jazz Icons
  • Rating: Five Stars
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