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This Is All I Ask

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Album Review

It is surprising that first-call bassist Niels Pedersen has recorded relatively few dates as a leader during his decades-long career; This Is All I Ask proves to be one of his most eclectic and rewarding CDs, as he's accompanied by guitarist Ulf Wakenius and drummer Jonas Johansen, and several special guests. His singing, lyrical tone on his instrument comes across right away, especially on the two traditional melodies "Quiet Solitude" and "Tranquility in the Woods," the latter featuring pianist Oscar Peterson in a relatively rare appearance as a sideman during his later years. The European pop singer Monique is someone Pedersen discovered when he heard her on his daughter's radio; he showcases her on a funky original called "Summer Song" (not to be confused with Dave Brubeck's well-known piece of the same name). The Swedish singer Monica Zetterlund, who occasionally worked with pianist Bill Evans when he toured Europe, is joined by alto sax great Phil Woods and Pedersen's trio for a heartfelt, swinging take of "Taking a Chance on Love," while Woods is the sole guest heard on the slow, very emotional rendition of "This Is All I Ask." Pedersen's trio tracks are all first-rate as well. His virtuoso side comes across in another original work, "Traces of the Past," while his playful post-bop reading of the old show tune "Just in Time" is the cooker of the entire set. Not widely distributed outside of Europe, this is easily one of Niels Pedersen's finest recordings.


Born: 27 May 1946 in Osted, Denmark

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

A virtuoso who mostly played in bop-oriented settings, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen was in great demand since he was a teenager. One of many superb European bassists to emerge during the 1960s, Pedersen originally studied piano before starting to play bass with Danish groups when he was 14. He had to reluctantly turn down Count Basie's offer to join his orchestra when he was just 17, but worked steadily as the house bassist at the Club Montmartre and as a member of the Danish Radio Orchestra. Whenever...
Full bio
This Is All I Ask, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen
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  • 10,99 €
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Bop, Hard Bop
  • Released: 01 January 1998

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