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Bach - The Brandenburgs

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Album Review

Depending on who you talk to, the third stream movement of the '50s was either an absolute blessing or an absolute curse. There are racial separatists who claim that third stream was an assault on African-American culture because it tried to "whiten" jazz, and there are equally silly individuals who insist that Beethoven and Mozart were jazz musicians but that Chick Corea, Michael Brecker and Pat Metheny are not. Discussions of third stream tend to inspire moronic comments from both pro-third stream and anti-third stream people, but the bottom line is that third stream has had both its ups and downs creatively (more ups than downs). Not everything that French pianist Jacques Loussier (one of Europe's leading third stream proponents) has recorded is great — some of his jazz/Euro-classical experiments have worked well, some not so well — but his risk-taking spirit clearly serves him well on Bach: The Brandenburgs. This 2006 recording finds Loussier's trio (which also includes bassist Benoit Dunoyer de Segonzac and drummer André Arpino) interpreting the six Brandenburg concertos that Johann Sebastian Bach (b. 1685, d. 1750) composed between 1708 and 1720, and interpret is definitely the operative word. Unlike a musician who plays Euro-classical music exclusively, Loussier does not play Bach's material note for note; he improvises, offering personal and introspective performances. Loussier is quite tasteful, and he makes Bach's compositions sound perfectly natural in a jazz setting. Bach: The Brandenburgs is not recommended to classical purists; this is an album for jazz piano enthusiasts who also happen to appreciate Bach's legacy, and those who fit that description will find Bach: The Brandenburgs to be one of Loussier's more lucid and artistically successful offerings.

Customer Reviews


The record is superb . All the allegros are very rythmical and extremely well played. This is a record everybody that likes classical music and jazz shoul own. Para todos los amigos hispanos, este disco esta excelente. Me gustó mucho pues la música clasica interpretada ritmicamente es dificil de conseguir.


Born: October 26, 1934 in Angers, France

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

b. 26 October 1934, Angers, France. A classically taught pianist, Loussier found a career in commercial popular music more lucrative. Then, in 1959, he hit upon the idea of performing the classical piano works of Johann Sebastian Bach in a quasi-jazz style. Together with Pierre Michelot and Christian Garros, the trio had enormous international success with the wider public. The concept, the low-key detached style, and possibly the huge commercial success, failed to endear the group to the hardcore...
Full Bio
Bach - The Brandenburgs, Jacques Loussier Trio
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music
  • Released: Oct 24, 2006

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