New York Trio

Begin the Beguine

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The New York Trio consists of pianist Bill Charlap, bassist Jay Leonhart, and drummer Bill Stewart, though it exists solely as a studio band for the Japanese label Venus, as Charlap's regular trio includes Peter Washington and Kenny Washington. Even though this band only meets occasionally in the studio to record yet another release in their prolific series for the Japanese jazz market, there is plenty of chemistry between the three veterans, while the nine songs from the vast Cole Porter songbook were likely to have been a part of each musician's repertoire long before these 2005 sessions. Charlap's lyrical piano style is quite effective, capturing the nuances of Porter's humor (even though none of his lyrics are heard), while the rhythm section gels nicely with the pianist. Highlights include a jaunty "My Heart Belongs to Daddy," a dreamy "Begin the Beguine," and a snappy "From This Moment On."

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