everybodydigs#10 Bill Evans Trio – Portrait In Jazz


everybodydigs# is a series of posts about Jazz, Funk, Soul & R’n’b albums released from the 20s to the 90s, you can read a brief description/review and listen to a small preview (when it’s possible). everybodydigs# is like when someone tells you “hey you should listen to this album!” and nothing less, enjoy!

Lyric and thoughtful, pianist Bill Evans proved an urbane bridge between the early bop style of Bud Powell and playful funk of Horace Silver, and the later, modern approach of pianists like Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, and Keith Jarrett (indeed, Jarrett went as far as to record with Evans’s backup band of drummer Paul Motian and bassist Gary Peacock). Evans’s second album as a leader, Portrait in Jazz combines a pair of originals–“Blue in Green” and “Peri’s Scope”–with a handful of show tunes and standards, including a version of “Someday My Prince Will Come” that pre-dates Miles Davis’s adaptation. With a preference for irregular phrasing and a taste for unusual chord spellings, Evans was frequently able to recast old chestnuts and tired warhorses into new gems and spirited charges, as he does here with “Witchcraft,” “Spring Is Here,” and “When I Fall in Love.” And although he recorded in many different formats throughout his career, including duets with himself, the power and beauty of Evans’s trios helped him lay a special claim to that grouping. –Fred Goodman

Personnel: Bill Evans (piano); Scott LaFaro (bass); Paul Motian (drums).

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