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The Composer

  out of 4 Music Review: The Composer

Artist: Oscar Peterson
Genre: Jazz
Release Date: May 2001

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
No rating supplied

"The Composer" was meant to showcase the in-depth abilities of Oscar Peterson as a composer and jazz pianist. This CD is a collection of songs recorded between 1974 and 1986 for the Pablo label, a subsidiary of Fantasy. There is mixture of live and studio tracks to give you an idea of the atmosphere of a night in concert with Peterson and the perfection he created in the studio.

The incomparable Joe Pass is present to lend his lightning fast guitar to Peterson's equally rapid finger movements on the keys. Pass certainly added an appealing and tasty element to the overall musical scheme of things. Those of you whom have become accustomed to Peterson's style and choice of accompaniment my find this a bit strident as he jumps from one style to the next on this assorted collection. There is jazz, ragtime, swing, blues, and classical to enjoy amongst the offerings on the nine tracks.

While most may have considered him a magnificent interpreter of American standards, he begs to differ with his fleeting adroitness and ability to bounce around from one style to the next fluidly and naturally. Peterson proves time and again that he is flexible and most entertaining regardless of what direction he decides to take musically on this bright and upbeat collection. The man has been a modern day wonder with the gift of virtuosity at his very fingertips.

The proof of my words are found in the songs "Lady Di's Waltz" and "The Bach Suite: Allegro." The contrast and differentiated color palettes between the two songs are striking and most commendable. This may be the most different and enjoyable Oscar Peterson recording you will ever hear, and it may quickly become the most treasured.

1. Jubilation
2. Lady Di's Waltz
3. Night Child
4. L'Impossible
5. City Lights
6. The Bach Suite: Allegro
7. If You Only Knew
8. Hogtown Blues
9. Place St. Henri



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