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Album Review

The reason to mention the "particulars" of this document of informal sessions is because Keith Jarrett went to the trouble of doing so in his liner notes: they came about in the aftermath of he and Charlie Haden playing together during Ramblin' Boy, a documentary film about Haden. The duo, who hadn't played together in over 30 years, got along famously and decided to do some further recording in Jarrett's Cavelight home studio without an end result in mind. The tapes sat — though were discussed often — for three years before a decision was made to release some of them. Jasmine is a collection of love songs; most are standards played by two stellar improvisers. Picking out highlights on this eight-song, hour-long set is difficult because the dry warmth of these performances is multiplied by deeply intuitive listening and the near symbiotic, telepathic nature of the playing. The entire proceeding flows seamlessly. The depth of emotion in Peggy Lee's and Victor Young's "Where Can I Go Without You" opens the world of the bereft lover — and Haden's solo seems to make her/him speak. Jarrett's intro to "I'm Gonna Laugh You Right Out of My Life," by Cy Coleman and Joseph McCarthy, reveals in its lyric just how woefully ironic this tune is. The loss and reverie steeped in false bravado are expressed in Jarrett's arpeggios and underscored by Haden's emphasis on single notes during the changes and a deep woody tone he gets in the combination of skeletal flourishes during Jarrett's solo. On the surface it might seem that the inclusion of Joe Sample's "One Day I'll Fly Away" is an odd inclusion; yet it acts on some level as the hinge piece for the set. Its simplicity and sparseness are offset by the profound lyricism Jarrett imbues it with. Haden asserts, quietly of course, that the complex emotions in the tune go beyond any language — other than music's — to express. After a devastatingly sad reading Gordon Jenkins' "Goodbye" with Jarrett at his most poignant and clean, a brief reading of Jerome Kern's and Oscar Hammerstein's "Don't Ever Leave Me" closes the set. The way it's played, this tune is not a plea, but a poetically uttered assertion between lovers. Jasmine is, ultimately, jazz distilled to its most essential; it not only expresses emotion and beauty, but discovers them in every moment of its performance.

Customer Reviews

Sublime and enthralling progression.

Love this album and not what I was expecting from previous work by Jarrett. A mesmerising partnership with bassist Charlie Haden they delight us with a delightfully informal exploration of some very good tunes. The inventiveness of both is continually both surprising and pleasing. You can imagine old friends coming together to spend a calm peaceful time together. Wonderfully sublime and enthralling after dinner music.

!!!

simply beautiful! well done!

masterpiece spoilt

Another good album,could of been a great album,but as usual with with all Jarrets work its ruined by his vocal groanings in the background,does anybody know why is ruins his recordings in this way?

Biography

Born: 08 May 1945 in Allentown, PA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Pianist, composer, and bandleader Keith Jarrett is one of the most prolific, innovative, and iconoclastic musicians to emerge from the late 20th century. As a pianist (though that is by no means the only instrument he plays), he literally changed the conversation in jazz by introducing an entirely new aesthetic regarding solo improvisation in concert. Though capable of playing in a wide variety of styles, Jarrett is deeply grounded in the jazz tradition. He has recorded nearly 80 albums...
Full bio