Jack Reilly

Here's What I Like!

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Solo piano from Reilly, in this case recorded at the Sovereign Restaurant in Gainesville, Florida, is much more than dinner music. This sounds like a formal concert as opposed to sit down full course jazz, judging by the crowd response. Reilly plays nine standards of Gershwin, Cole Porter, Ray Noble, George Shearing, Richard Rodgers, Sammy Cahn, Irving Berlin, Leonard Bernstein, and two Bill Evans numbers. He's a fine interpreter of these chestnuts, adding his own takes and subtracting standard nomenclature for his own stylisims.

As Evans is a hero the disc starts with "My Bells" and "Peri's Scope," the former a patient peace piece, the latter an ebuillent, effervescent swinger. Reilly chimes chords church-like on "Little Old Lady" and "Somewhere/One Hand, One Heart" in a regal, dignified, artistically sonoric manner. An angelic yet impatient "My Funny Valentine" contrasts with the more polite, classical "Lullabye Of Birdland." His cascading, tumbling version of "My Man's Gone Now" and circle the wagons approach to the melody of "How Deep Is The Ocean?" is positively virtuosic. Stride inflections on "I Got Rhythm" are like a kid playing with a beach ball, or learning new angles by which to spin a frisbee. His lone original "Resurrection" is filled with dramatism, swinging inquisitive right hand chords with jubilant left hand punctuations.

This CD is extraordinarily well recorded, the piano sings as does the musician playing it. Recommended for fans of Evans, Hank Jones, Tommy Flanagan, and others who like a good dosage of solo piano played to the maximum of class and clarity.

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