Keith Emerson, Plays Emerson, 2017

emerson plays emersonThis is a re-release of an album that has long been out of print. It is also a fresh remaster, albeit with original art. And of course, I should not need to introduce the man! What you get on this album are 22 tracks in a total playing time of some 62 minutes. Most of it is Keith (R.I.P.) playing piano, while on a couple of tracks he is accompanied by drums and bass. There are also a couple of live tracks.

And all this serves testament to the legacy of Emerson. A virtuoso, at home in and famous for progressive rock with Emerson Lake and Palmer, but also active in film music, in jazz, boogie, you name it. Since the centre of this is him playing piano, you should not expect wild progressive pieces. This is much more delicate and sometimes jazzy or bluesy, yet all done with flawless taste and impeccable execution.

Thank you Keith Emerson for your music, and thank you Emerson Estate for making this possible.


Erik Sondhy, Recorded at Abbey Road Studios, 2016

erik sondhy - abbey roadI got this CD a while back but with all things happening, it took me a while before I could finally put it in the CD player and have a listen. Presented by the Indonesian label IndoJazzia (you take a wild guess), what we have here is Balinese jazz pianist Erik Sondhy. And recorded live at the world famous Abbey Road studios.

There are 6 tracks and over 50 minutes of music on this, and the album opens with London Blues. In essence it is a fairly simple left hand boogie woogie, but what impresses me is what he does with his right hand. The rhythmic structures and melodies that go left, right and all over the place, just seem to dance effortlessly over the straight boogie. The man clearly has a distinct feel and is able to play free as a bird, while keeping the rhythm going.
Next song I Will is a whole different affair. Very moody, sometimes hushed, but very beautiful. Fitting is that it is written by Lennon and McCartney, although you will have a hard time making the connection. Song For My Mother follows, and has a bit more pace, but is as dramatic and enchanting.

Trust me when I say the other 3 are of the same calibre. Anyone into solo piano can buy this on sight!