From the album FIFTY-FIFTY
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- Pierrick Pédron
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PIERRICK PÉDRON MARKS TURNING 50 WITH A BANG: A DOUBLE ALBUM CALLED “FIFTY-FIFTY“
“50“ is a nice, round, imposing number. To honor it, the French alto saxophone wizard, Pierrick Pédron, ventured to record a double album in the year of his 50th birthday.
The first album, “Fifty/Fifty New York Sessions“, will be released March 5th, 2021 on the Gazebo label. Free-flowing and entirely acoustic, it encapsulates his love for New York City and its relentless exploration of jazz as an artform. The second, “Fifty/Fifty Paris Sessions“, due to come out this autumn, is electric and draws from the throbbing energy of a Pa- ris‘ up and coming artists to deliver a more sensuous, groovy music. This double album is the fruit of Pierrick‘s collaboration with producer Daniel Yvinec, who has worked with eminent artists such as Suzanne Vega, Salif Keita, Andy Bey, Maceo Parker, Yael Naim, Paul Motian and Mark Turner.
Pierrick has covered a lot of ground since “Cherokee“ (2001), his first album as a leader, accompanied by the remarkable Baptiste Trotignon, Vincent Artaud and Frank Agulhon. We have seen him roaming the pla- net, live or in the studio, with Mulgrew Miller, Phil Woods, Roy Hargrove or Ambrose Akinmusire. We have heard him switching with incredible ease from straight-ahead jazz to baffling electric experiments. We have felt him find inspiration in the legacy of Cannonball Adderley’s phra- sing as well as Ornette Coleman’s and Maceo Parker’s. In short, we have witnessed the colorful explosion of his multi-faceted talent.
Pierrick‘s momentum keeps growing and in its “Fifty/Fifty“ path, it has now swooped up three true masters: on the piano we have Sullivan Fortner, whose young age belies an amazing maturity; on the bass, Larry Grenadier, the great, historical partner of the Brad Mehldau trio; and on drums, Marcus Gilmore, who shares Fortner’s youth and wisdom and is perpetuating the magnificent work of his grandfather, Roy Haynes.
The music you‘ll hear arises from the voracious encounter of these three musicians, who joyfully interplay under the direction of Pierrick‘s saxo- phone, all of them running around in the playground of his inspiring compositions. This quartet belongs indeed to New York‘s creative tra- dition: it‘s passionate, bold, striking. And to top it off, the recording by engineer James Farber − whose name has been associated with every great jazz record in the past 30 years − pushes the quality of the music to its perfect expression and gives it the varnish that you can only find in the finest artwork.
This album may have been conceived as the “half of a double“, but it stands as a whole. And without a doubt, it‘s already a great jazz record.