Pianist/singer/songwriter, Eliane Elias is known for her distinctive and immediately recognizable musical style which blends her Brazilian roots, her sensuous, alluring voice with her impressive instrumental jazz, classical and compositional skills. This live recording need not fear comparison with the studio recordings - despite the greater number of stars involved in their production - as the depth of knowledge of the material acquired over a long period of time and the live atmosphere inspire this recording.
This DVD highlights the advantages perfectly: there are loads of camera angles, and the cutting between long views and close ups of Jamal's facial expressions and hand gestures to the others, Heard's fingering and Israel's cymbals really adds to the live jazz experience.
A sorely underexposed figure and a major influence on Miles Davis, pianist Ahmad Jamal isn't generally ranked among the all-time giants of jazz, but he impressed fellow musicians and record buyers alike with his innovative, minimalist approach.
Three giants of jazz join forces in a memorable concert, recorded live at the Munich Philharmonie in 1988. At the 1987 Munich Philharmonie the Herbie Hancock Trio had played Air Dancing, a lyrical reflection by the bassist, which had become well known in the years 1987 to 1989, as it appeared on recordings by such varied artists as Stanley Cowell, Larry Coryell and Benny Green with the composer. This is the only repeat from the previous year's program. This year they were joined on stage by Michael Brecker, maybe the most influential tenor saxophonist of his generation, who remains a model for a whole range of younger musicians.
These quite rare tracks show Sarah Vaughan in her prime (and still quite attractive, if I might add a small opinion), scatting and mellow-singing with her trio, as well as a not so bad (but neither perfect nor perfectly presented) version of Duke Ellington's orchestra, featuring Russell Procope, Harry Carney, Paul Gonsalves and other giants, plus some bit younger but still mean cats (Harold Ashbey, Norris Turney)… Maybe Cootie Williams is not up to the task on "Take the A Train" (Is it really him? He used to sound so powerful once upon the time…), but Gonsalves-Ashby-Turney tenor sax battle is a riot(on "Triplicate") and Duke is always a pure joy to watch and listen, conducting and leading his orchestra and the smaller outfits (which is also documented in the Ellington segment of the DVD).