Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Petros Klampanis: Contextual

JazzTimes may earn a small commission if you buy something using one of the retail links in our articles. JazzTimes does not accept money for any editorial recommendations. Read more about our policy here. Thanks for supporting JazzTimes.

A formidable player and composer, bassist Petros Klampanis garnered acclaim in his native Greece and throughout Europe before moving to New York in 2008. Now a member of Greg Osby’s stable at Inner Circle, he makes his auspicious Stateside debut with Contextual. Opening with “Thalassaki,” a traditional Greek melody performed by string quartet and bass, Klampanis smacks the wood of his deep-toned upright for percussive effect while the strings play a moody Balkan refrain. He demonstrates chordal mastery on a stirring solo bass interpretation of Hoagy Carmichael’s melancholy “Skylark,” and strikes an intimate accord with vocalist Gretchen Parlato on a duet of Paul McCartney’s “Blackbird.” His “Basscape” is an adventurous bit of looped self-accompaniment, while “Basscope” is an exercise in layered ambient sound recalling Robert Fripp’s late-’70s experiments with Frippertronics. A couple more exemplary duets round out the program: Klampanis and guitarist Paul Bollenback blisteringly navigate the changes of John Coltrane’s “Countdown,” while “Mingum,” inspired by bassist-composer Charles Mingus, is an affecting conversation with pianist David Berkman.

Originally Published