Oscar Peterson has stated that he feels his MPS recordings are his finest. That is quite a statement considering the huge amount of records that the pianist has produced through the past 50 years. This set reissues the music from six of his MPS LPs: Action, Girl Talk, The Way I Really Play, My Favorite Instrument, Mellow Mood, and Travelin' On. While some of the performances feature the 1963 trio he had with bassist Ray Brown and drummer Ed Thigpen, most of the music dates from 1967-1968 and matches Peterson with bassist Sam Jones and either Louis Hayes or Bobby Durham on drums. A special treat is Peterson's first unaccompanied solo album, which fills up the final LP. Peterson's many fans know what to expect in this set, while other listeners need to discover him to realize what all of the fuss was about. Quite simply, Oscar Peterson has long been one of the greatest pianists the world has ever known; this reissue offers plenty of proof.
This 1996 single-CD reissues the complete contents of two former LPs by the Oscar Peterson Trio (consisting of pianist Peterson, bassist Ray Brown and drummer Ed Thigpen) in 1959 and 1962. Although the pianist is virtually always the lead voice, Brown and Thigpen both make strong (if subtle) contributions to the music. Highlights include "Liza," "Con Alma," "Waltz for Debby," Brown's "The Gravy Waltz" and "Yours Is My Heart Alone." An above-average release (and rather generous at 74 minutes) from the much-recorded Oscar Peterson.
Oscar Peterson appeared on hundreds of recordings produced by Norman Granz, though most of his early trio dates for Mercury and Clef were overlooked for CD reissue until the release of this thorough seven-disc compilation by Mosaic in 2008. It still represents only a portion of the pianist's considerable output for the two labels between 1951 and 1953. This collection was put together as a result of laborious detective work, assembling nine different sessions from tape masters and second generation reels, 78s, EPs and LPs, some of which came from collectors and libraries, while also including eight previously unissued performances…
In the mid-'70s, Oscar Peterson recorded duet albums with veteran trumpeters Dizzy Gillespie, Roy Eldridge, Clark Terry, and Harry "Sweets" Edison. He paid the young Jon Faddis a huge compliment by also recording a set with him. Faddis, very much under Gillespie's influence but already displaying a wide range, clearly enjoyed the challenge, and on a set of standards and basic material, he often tears into the songs with reckless abandon. The Peterson-Faddis encounter is generally quite exciting and a high point in the early career of Jon Faddis.
Oscar Peterson was one of the greatest piano players of all time. A pianist with phenomenal technique on the level of his idol, Art Tatum, Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were amazing. Very effective in small groups, jam sessions, and in accompanying singers, O.P. was at his absolute best when performing unaccompanied solos. His original style did not fall into any specific idiom. Like Erroll Garner and George Shearing, Peterson's distinctive playing formed during the mid- to late '40s and fell somewhere between swing and bop. Peterson was criticized through the years because he used so many notes, didn't evolve much since the 1950s, and recorded a remarkable number of albums.
The title of this CD certainly fits the players. Pianist Oscar Peterson (who switches to organ on two of the eight selections), guitarist Joe Pass, and bassist Ray Brown would each be on literally dozens of recordings for Norman Granz's Pablo label; all are worth acquiring by fans of straightahead jazz. This particular set has three Peterson originals (including one called "Jobim"), a few veteran standards, and Quincy Jones's "Eyes of Love."
Vol. 1. One of the nice things about jazz is the cross-pollination of different players in multiple settings. No one would've thought of pairing swing violinist Stéphane Grappelli and bop pianist Oscar Peterson, for instance, but the match works very well. The pair have expanded into a quartet on this reissue with the aid of double bassist Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen and drummer Kenny Clarke. The set, recorded in 1973 in Paris, includes a handful of standards, from Pinkard/Tracey/Tauber's "Them There Eyes" to Rodgers & Hart's "Thou Swell." As one might guess, Grappelli is in his own element on upbeat, swinging pieces like "Makin' Whoopee" and "Walkin' My Baby Back Home"…