One of Chick Corea's most ambitious projects was the recording of almost 60 hours of music with nine different groups over a three-week run at the Blue Note in December 2001; it must have been a challenge to choose the dozen performances for this two-CD set. The first disc begins with scat singer par excellence Bobby McFerrin joining the pianist to scat his way through three selections, including a stunning medley of an excerpt from Rodrigo's "Concierto de Aranjuez" and Corea's "Spain." Bassist Miroslav Vitous and ageless drummer Roy Haynes provide the pulse to his extended work "Matrix." Corea's well-crafted tribute to Bud Powell, with Terence Blanchard and Joshua Redman in the front line, combines two of Powell's greatest works, "Glass Enclosure" and "Tempus Fugit." But Corea is at his most lyrical when old friend Gary Burton joins him to revisit the pianist's masterpiece, the shimmering "Crystal Silence." The second disc is also full of great music, though disc one clearly gets the edge, with the possible exception of the virtuoso duo piano interpretation with Gonzalo Rubalcaba of the same medley performed with McFerrin on the first CD. It is safe to say that no fan of Chick Corea will be disappointed with this wide-ranging compilation of live music, and it
is also a great starting point for those not familiar with his voluminous works. Highly recommended.