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The Carnegie Hall Concert

Keith Jarrett

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Album Review

The new rules Keith Jarrett has made for himself in solo performance are firmly in play on the two-disc Carnegie Hall Concert, recorded in the Isaac Stern Auditorium in September of 2005. Those who found his earlier solo recordings — from Vienna and Köln to La Scala — to be compelling might be a bit disconcerted at first, because of the completely different approach Jarrett has taken to improvising. His concert is divided into shorter segments, or parts, and often changes direction numerous times in the course of a single piece. Indeed, the impression is given almost of composed songs where harmony, melody, and rhythm are pulled to the breaking point and reassembled along new lines. And even in more angular or turbulent sections, Jarrett's ideas are drenched in lyric ideas. Whether he is playing against himself contrapuntally, entering into a difficult chromatic interlude, or opening onto a pastoral sonic field, his notion of "song" prevails. His more knotty and immediate approach is full of wonderful ideas, sometimes deeply serious, at others humorous and beguiling. But there isn't a dull moment. Indeed, if the audience — which contained many critics and musicians — is any indication, the electricity carried over the stage both ways. There are ten parts that make up the concert proper, and on disc two, five short encore pieces that run from four to six minutes in length, culminating in his only standard, with a beautiful reading of "Time on My Hands." His beautiful reading of "My Song" (from a quartet recording in 1977) is here, restated with consummate grace. This is a Jarrett solo set for the ages; it showcases, since his full return in 1997, his renewed and restless commitment to the music and to himself as an artist.

Customer Reviews

Outstanding!

For all you Köln Concert fans -- listen up: This is at least as good, if not better. The first 10 tracks are off-the-cuff and full of Jarrett's usual playfulness. The 5 final tracks are encores and worth the price of the album by themselves. It doesn't get any better than this, folks. A timeless classic.

Jarrett kept the applause as crucial to the music

Keyboard magazine has an excellent two-part interview with Jarrett that can be read at its website. He says that the audience interaction is so important in his improvisation that it sounded incomplete when he tried removing the audience sound from this performance recording. So, he kept it.

From Dissonant to Lyrical

The first set of this concert was pretty dissonant and angular. Then after one song in the second set, Jarrett lets it rip with some lyrical and even bluesy pieces. And it all works, measuring up to the Koln concert. "Pt. 8" is worth the price of the entire album, and the encores rock. Being there was truly special--a treat I thought I might never enjoy--and the recording captures the excitment and energy in the room. Buy this, please; you'll listen again and again.

Biography

Born: May 8, 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
The Carnegie Hall Concert, Keith Jarrett
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  • $24.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, Avant-Garde Jazz
  • Released: Sep 22, 2006

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