Many Rifftides readers may be familiar with Erik Satie’s “Gymnopédie No. 1” because performers including Jessica Williams, Jacques Loussier, Ximo Tébar and Herbie Mann with Bill Evans have recorded jazz or near-jazz versions of that classic of French music. It has not become a jazz standard, but it has assumed a modest place in the repertoire. For those who have not heard the piece as Satie wrote it in 1888, here it is, played by the eminent Satie interpreter Aldo Ciccolini. The performance is from a 1979 Canadian broadcast.
At 85, Ciccolini continues to perform Satie, Debussy, Ravel, Janáček and Schumann, among others. This collection contains most, if not all, of his recordings of Satie’s music.