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Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen Trio: Friends Forever

The tone of Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen’s bass is so full and rich. His distinct sound comes rumbling up, a strong presence-not intrusive, but wonderfully pervasive. His listeners reap the benefits of this talent as do his musical partners. This recording is a tribute to one of them, his long-time collaborator, pianist Kenny Drew.

The trio on this date, pianist Renee Rosnes and Danish drummer Jonas Johansen, pours a great deal of itself into this odd assortment of tunes-emotion runs high. Rosnes exhibits tremendous depth, sensitivity and a bluesy spirit. The ability and feelings of the three players click with each other and create a recording that’s a joy to listen to.

“The Shadow of Your Smile,” “The Days of Wine and Roses”-old and tired? Not in these hands. They swing with a bright, fresh vitality. Then there’s the moody “Sometime Ago” and Danish traditional “Hushaby,” dark in parts yet lilting. In NH¯P’s moving pieces “Future Child-Friends Forever” and “Kenny,” you feel the depth of his commitment, not only to friendship with Drew, but to quality musicianship.

Originally Published