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Three pianists

wed 25 oct 2023
Theme: Jazz

Saturday October 28th, 8:00 PM – Jazz Piano.
On the piano stool sit successively Marc van Roon, Gerald Clayton (photo) and Robert Vermeulen. We zoom in on Clayton.
Pianist, composer, bandleader Gerald Clayton (Utrecht 1984) – son of bassist John Clayton – made his Blue Note debut in 2019, Happening: Live at the Village Vanguard. The album received two Grammy nominations, including Best Improvised Jazz Solo. Clayton’s recent contribution to Short Stories (2023), a piano trio led by bass veteran Vicente Archer.
The block ‘Clayton’ starts with a piece from Short Stories, a slow, almost meditative piece by drummer Bill Stewart.
A Light – a composition by Clayton – is on the Village Vanguard album. Clayton opens with a style copied from the atonal music of the 20th century: no pulse, dissonances, big jumps, register changes, silences. Slowly the music creeps towards more recognizable and repeated motifs, and towards a pulse – a foreshadowing of what is to come. Drums and bass join in softly and carefully, building towards a dynamically solid foundation with a distinctive rhythmic motif. Enter the two saxes with a unison theme. In the subsequent development the temperature and tension rise, which is maintained until the return of the theme in the final phase. Halfway through the piece – 9’22” in total – a blown rollercoaster pendulum transitions seamlessly into the piano. A moment not to be missed!

With Celia – in trio formation, without wind instruments – we enter the repertoire of pianist Bud Powell. Clayton also opts for a long introduction here. He takes the theme at a faster pace than the original. In the improvisation part Powell fades into the background. Bassist and drummer take plenty of time for an extensive ‘call and response’, with bassist Joe Sanders singing along in unison with his bass. Powell has the final say.
Celia received a Grammy nomination for Best Improvised Jazz Solo.

Details regarding this program are in the Guide.

Piano Jazz – Robert Vermeulen