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Andre Previn/David Finck: Live at the Jazz Standard

Listening to this impeccable collaboration with bassist David Finck at New York’s intimate jazz club, you’d never guess pianist Andre Previn squeezes in such dates during breaks from travel and concertizing. Previn remains one of the most versatile musicians in the world. He’s continued to gather credentials as a jazz pianist while focusing first on his career as arranger-composer for Hollywood films then as conductor of esteemed symphony orchestras. After a lengthy hiatus, Previn returned in 1989 to recording jazz albums for a variety of labels.

Previn’s crisp articulation and masterful jazz feeling recall his days working as a jazz pianist in L.A. before shifting, by1962, to become a full-time classical conductor. Exhibiting flawless technique and lightsome lyricism, Previn delivers 12 standards, including graceful takes on Duke Ellington’s “Come Sunday” and Billy Strayhorn’s “Chelsea Bridge.” Previn refreshes the Rodgers-Hart gem “My Funny Valentine,” and shows his sunniest side with buoyant takes on Russ Freeman’s “Fungo” and “Batter Up.” Young Finck performs to perfection throughout. Other tunes by Cole Porter, George and Ira Gershwin, as well as Previn’s happy original “Hi Blondie” and the Previn/Finck/Bergman romantic composition “Quiet Music/New Valley” complete this first-rate album.

Originally Published