CD: Alan Broadbent

Broadbent Giannelli.jpgAlan Broadbent Trio Live At Giannelli Square: Volume 1 (Chilly Bin). No outer space explorer, Broadbent finds in the song form all that he needs for freedom earned through discipline. The technique he has intensified in recent years is evident in the precision and relaxation of his counterpoint in “Lullaby of the Leaves,” stunning parallel constructions, speed and independence of hands in “Solar” and in dozens of other demonstrations of his skill. Broadbent’s music, however, is not about chops. He concerns himself with beauty. The manifestations of it include his poignant reharmonization of “Embraceable You,” called here “You and You Alone.” Broadbent’s longtime sidemen, bassist Putter Smith and drummer Kendall Kay, are strong and sensitive in support.

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  1. George Ziskind says

    I was pleased to see that you feel about the new Alan Broadbent as I do.
    I think he’s always been great but yet it seems like his playing inhabits a new, more rarified, level of superiority for the past three years or so. Though his playing in no way resembles (stylistically) Hank Jones or Tommy Flanagan or Kenny Barron, I sure do think of him as a player of that kind of excellence.
    This might sound like nit-picking but I don’t mean it as such: you referred to his version of ‘Embraceable” as being reharmonized, yet the foreign harmony only shows up as a scant two chords—each one bar long—at the very top of the track, and doesn’t happen again on any successive choruses. (However, catching those two bars entitles you to a one year membership in Excellent Lobes Organization).
    His chords are just the standard treatment most bebop-ingrained progeny of Bird would use. But—and this is yet another aspect of his artistry—he’s seating real pregnant money notes on the harmonies, and his improv is making lovely little songs as he goes along.

  2. Doug Zielke says

    It took Amazon a couple of months to get it to Coquitlam, BC, but I finally have my copy of “Live at Giannelli Square Volume 1”. I have enjoyed Alan Broadbent’s playing since hearing him with Charlie Haden’s Quartet West and as accompanist to Irene Kral. What a wonderful recording this is with excellent music and great sound quality.
    I hope Vol. 2 is on the way shortly. And thanks to you for the heads-up.

  3. Wade Cottingham says

    Beautiful, informative review of a gorgeous recording, your review prompted me to download this great album, thanks !