Pianist Zeitlin has recorded three albums with bassist Buster Williams and drummer Matt Wilson, beginning in 2001 with Stairway To The Stars, then the adventurous Slickrock in 2003 and In Concert, in 2009. Wishing On The Moon, recorded earlier but just released, revisits several items that Zeitlin has recorded before, including “Slickrock.” Inspired by his and his wife’s mountain-biking adventures, Zeitlin expands the piece into a four-part suite that conjures up the sport’s peaceful setting in the sandstone reaches of Utah’s Moab region and the thrills it gives the cyclists who ride there.
Despite their not working regularly as a group and long stretches between gigs, the music here indicates the trio’s increased rapport in terms of close listening, balance and reaction to one another’s stimuli. They revisit pieces like “All Of You,” and “Put Your Little Foot Right Out” with the same sense of discovery as in “Wishing On The Moon”—a lyrical new Zeitlin ballad—and their smoking explorations of David Friesen’s “Signs & Wonders” and Zeitlin’s “There And Back.” Zeitlin, Williams and Wilson have tightness and togetherness that could lead a listener to assume that they play together every night. This is an important addition to the account of their achievement. We don’t often enough give credit to soundmeisters, but in this case recording by Jeff Jones, and mixing and mastering by Vadim Canby, deserve recognition. It’s a crisp, clean recording with depth and clarity
To my knowledge, no video exists of the Wishing On The Moon date, but Bret Primack, the Jazz Video Guy, posted this earlier encounter of Zeitlin, Williams and Wilson in a more conservative, but nonetheless rhythmically compelling, 2003 version of “All Of You.”
The Rifftides staff hopes that you’re having a good weekend.