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Charlie Haden & Brad Mehldau: Long Ago and Far Away (Impulse!)

It starts with a few irreverent tickles. Just three minutes into Bird’s “Au Privave,” Brad Mehldau gives his muse the green light, messes around with a spray of notes, and we’re off into a chatty conversation where blithe trills are grounded by buoyant thumps—meaning informality has just as much bearing on this entertaining exchange as … Read More “Charlie Haden & Brad Mehldau: Long Ago and Far Away (Impulse!)”

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Charlie Haden and Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Tokyo Adagio

If you’re ever inclined to wonder what Bill Evans’ 1961 Village Vanguard recordings might have sounded like sans Paul Motian’s drums, this live set by bassist Charlie Haden and pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba, recorded at the Blue Note in Tokyo in 2005, provides one possibility. Bass and piano is a challenging duet set-up, but opener “En … Read More “Charlie Haden and Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Tokyo Adagio”

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Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden/Paul Motian: Hamburg ’72

Reissues and previously unreleased “vault” recordings are crucial to the jazz record industry. Since the start of the compact disc era in 1983, both have abounded. The steady stream of important previously unreleased old recordings has necessitated a new album designation in the jazz polls: “Historical.” The ECM label has been late getting on this … Read More “Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden/Paul Motian: Hamburg ’72”

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Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden: Last Dance

[Editor’s note: This review was written and published in JazzTimes shortly before Charlie Haden’s death. We’ve left it intact.] So maybe this project should officially be known as the Standards Duo. Four years after old friends and onetime musical collaborators Keith Jarrett and Charlie Haden released their first batch of vintage material recorded at the … Read More “Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden: Last Dance”

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Jan Garbarek/Egberto Gismonti/Charlie Haden : Magico: Carta De Amor

The unearthing and release of previously unissued jazz recordings has become its own industry. ECM has gotten into the act. Earlier this year they released Keith Jarrett’s Sleeper, from 1979, and now there is Carta de Amor, a two-CD set by the trio that called itself Magico. They were together for just two albums recorded … Read More “Jan Garbarek/Egberto Gismonti/Charlie Haden : Magico: Carta De Amor”

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Lee Konitz/Brad Mehldau/Charlie Haden/Paul Motian: Live at Birdland

An early favorite for best live release of 2011, Live at Birdland documents extended improvisations on a half-dozen jazz and pop standards over two nights in December 2009. Lee Konitz, Charlie Haden and Brad Mehldau had done something similar in Los Angeles more than a decade ago, resulting in a pair of albums. This time … Read More “Lee Konitz/Brad Mehldau/Charlie Haden/Paul Motian: Live at Birdland”

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Charlie Haden: Sophisticated Ladies

This isn’t the first time Charlie Haden’s Quartet West has sidestepped its postbop proclivity to settle into silkier settings alongside preeminent vocalists. Back in 1999, Haden and pianist Alan Broadbent, saxophonist Ernie Watts and drummer Larance Marable (since replaced by Rodney Green) examined The Art of the Song, with splendid assistance from Shirley Horn and … Read More “Charlie Haden: Sophisticated Ladies”

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Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden: Jasmine

For 30-odd years, piano Prometheus Keith Jarrett has done his musical bidding and exploring in self-limited settings, most often either in his “Standards” trio with Jack DeJohnette and Gary Peacock, or-with greater regularity of late-solo. That alone makes Jarrett’s rare and beauteous new duet recording with bassist Charlie Haden a departure while simultaneously a rapprochement … Read More “Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden: Jasmine”

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Live Review: Charlie Haden at Yoshi’s

Through bassist Charlie Haden’s long and illustrious career, concepts such as “freedom” and “liberation” seem to turn up repeatedly. His role in the evolution of free jazz with Ornette Coleman’s quartet has been well documented, and his own recordings with the Liberation Music Orchestra obviously extend the theme. In this regard, it is interesting now … Read More “Live Review: Charlie Haden at Yoshi’s”

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