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Bebop Spoken There

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Thursday, May 09, 2019

CD Review: Alvin Queen Trio - OP (A Tribute to Oscar Peterson)

Alvin Queen (drums); Zier Romme Larsen (piano); Ida Hvid (bass)
(Review by Lance)

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery wrote Charles Caleb Colton in the early 1800s. Close on a couple of 100 years later, John Mason wrote Imitation is Limitation. Listening to this delightful tribute to the late Oscar Peterson both sides could make a case. The word tribute itself is defined as an act, statement or gift that is intended to show gratitude, respect or admiration. Well, it is certainly all of those things as Peterson's daughter Celine points out in the blurb. She continues and explains that Alvin Queen created this powerful musical statement as a gift to her dad showing his deep gratitude for the time they were able to spend together performing all over the world.
Amen to that.

Queen, who was part of one of the great Canadian pianist's trios (was he before or after Martin Drew?) drives this disc along as he no doubt did with the maestro. Indeed maestro could be equally applied to Larsen - he has absorbed the inspiration and, in the process, become his own man.

The repertoire includes nine Peterson originals. Oscar's faith is expressed very profoundly in Larsen's interpretations of Jesus Christ Lies Here Tonight; The Last Supper and Hymn to Freedom. These are beautiful beyond words but, if you want to get your kicks without hitting Route 66 then It Happened in Monterey will supply the fix. This swings like as though there was no tomorrow!

Reunion Blues is a classic mid-tempo 12 bar with Queen putting the boot in and Ida holding her own against Oscar's illustrious bass players. One of them, Ray Brown, composed Gravy Waltz and it was Queen who got the gravy on this one.

It doesn't get any better than this!
Lance.
Sushi; Nightingale; Jesus Christ Lies Here Tonight; Wheatland; Hero; Cake Walk; You Look Good to Me; The Last Supper; Soon; When Summer Comes; It Happened in Monterey; Reunion Blues; Gravy Waltz; Hymn to Freedom.
Available May 10 - CD or LP on Stunt Records.

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