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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons (New Jazz Arrangements By Jacques Loussier)

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Album Review

Pianist Jacques Loussier has certainly had an unusual career, much of it spent performing jazz interpretations of Bach's music. While his original works have been noteworthy, Loussier's most famous projects have been his transformations of Bach's music. In 1997 he tackled Vivaldi's Four Seasons, four concertos that he performed and recorded with his trio. As with Bach's pieces, Loussier pays respect to Vivaldi's melodies and the development of the works while swinging the music. He divides each of the concertos into three parts, improvises tastefully while keeping the themes in mind, and leads his trio through some uncharted territory. Loussier occasionally recalls the style of John Lewis and Allegro Non Molto from the Summer piece has some resemblances to Lewis' "Django." Due to Loussier's impressive technique, respect for both idioms and his well thought-out concept, this unique set is a complete success.

Customer Reviews

Loussier makes Vivaldi his own

Listening to this album, you wonder if Vivaldi might have been actually writing for a performer like Loussier - while the tonalities are not compromised at all, and these are very true renditions of the original compositions, the trio form brings a life entirely their own to these wonderful tunes. The Seasons, as in the original arrangements by the composer, are brought to life by this trio and the piano work is flawless. Wonderfully engineered and performed, Loussier makes Vivaldi one of my favorites again in this sublime set.

Really Enjoyable

I had a little bit of a hard time warming up to one of the Bach albums. I wondered how anyone could possibly improve on Bach (?) After a few listens, I really got into it. This Vivaldi album was wonderful from the start. My ten year old boy really enjoyed it too. I try to play classical for my kids, but it's a little much for them. This music is a wonderful bridge of two genres.

Biography

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
Vivaldi: The Four Seasons (New Jazz Arrangements By Jacques Loussier), Jacques Loussier Trio
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