Bill Evans

Verve Jazz Masters 5: Bill Evans

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Vol. 5 of the Verve Jazz Masters series features Bill Evans, who recorded a handful of interesting studio, live in concert, and individualistic projects in his mid-career from 1962-1969. This was a bridge period when he recorded for Verve, after his initial efforts on Riverside and before his return to that recording company with subsequent albums on the Riverside-affiliated Fantasy imprint. There are several different trios featured here among the 13 selections, but not exclusively triads, as a duet or quartet session is tossed in for good measure. Only two of his compositions are present, most particularly "Funkallero," as well as a modicum of standards, the pop tune "Alfie," and zingers like Thelonious Monk's "Bemsha Swing," Joe Zawinul's "Angel Face," and Denny Zeitlin's "Quiet Now." All are played with the typical restraint and melodic brilliance you consistently expect from Evans. The sole standout soloists are guitarist Jim Hall and tenor saxophonist Stan Getz. The collection showcases a sliver of Evans experimenting with different aspects of his then well-developed musical voice.

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