Piano trios––piano, bass, and drums––have been a constant of American music since the 1940s, catching fire in the 1950s with the work of Ahmad Jamal (see below), Oscar Peterson, Hank Jones, Bud Powell, Bill Evans, and so on. They remain popular today thanks to the artistry of Jason Moran, Matthew Shipp, Brad Mehldau, Tord Gustavsen, Fergus McCreadie, and others including the gentleman below.
Pianist and composer Laszlo Gardony first recorded with bassist John Lockwood and drummer Yoron Israel in 2003 and five times since. Their sixth recording, the appropriately-titled "Close Connection" (Sunnyside Records), accentuates the musicians' relationship on and off the bandstand. The trio reconvened in early 2022 after nearly two years of inactivity due to the COVID pandemic. Professor Gardony (he's on the faculty of Berklee College of Music and Harvard University) brought in six original pieces and the Trio created another six collectively in the studio.
|Photo: Chris Drukker|
|Photo: Ross Archives|
The booklet that accompanies the package includes interviews with Mr. Jamal, with Marshall Chess (whose Argo label released a number of seminal Lps by the pianist), with Ramsey Lewis, Hiromi, and a long history of the pianist and review of the album's performances written by reviewer/critic Eugene Holley, Jr.
Here's "Tangerine" with the 1964 Trio of Mr. Jamal, bassist Jamil Nasser, and drummer Chuck Lampkin: