Franco D'Andrea

Special Edition

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A classic album of the '80s, this gorgeously recorded collection of five CDs offers more than a passing glimpse at one of the giants of 20th century jazz piano. These recordings are an opportunity to hear d'Andrea in multiple settings -- solo, trio, and quartet -- in the company of both Americans and Italians. Most of the tunes were composed by the pianist, who is a brilliant writer as well as improviser. The tracks with Barry Altschul on drums and Mark Helias on bass are stunners, particularly when saxophonist Tino Tracanna is added. d'Andrea's playing impresses overwhelmingly with its sweeping breadth. He mixes tempos, dazzles with both hands, covers the range of the keyboard, and reaches back to rag rhythms while anticipating the future. If d'Andrea resided in the United States, he'd no doubt be known as one of the greats of jazz. Sold only as a set, the titles of the individual albums are: Dialogues With Super-Ego/'ES', My Shuffle, Made in Italy, My One and Only Love, and No Idea of Time.