Roberta Piket

Speak, Memory

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    6
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Roberta Piket's third outing as a leader, a trio session with bassist Masa Kamaguchi and drummer Jeff Williams, is strikingly advanced and mature. In addition to four strong originals, the pianist has her way with several gems from the Songbook: Johnny Mandel's "A Time for Love," Kurt Weill's "Lost in the Stars," and two by Harold Arlen, "When the Sun Comes Out" and "The Man That Got Away" (the latter a solo piece). For good measure, Piket also includes a rendition of the Fifth Dimension hit "Up, Up and Away," giving the song an impressionistic lilt and adding an effective 5/4 tag. Piket's writing is crisp and expressive, and her confident playing does justice to every mood and setting, from the bright waltz of "Too Sensible" to the mid-tempo lyricism of "Gone" and "Hands" to the high-velocity, bracingly modern swing of the title track.

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