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Quiet Now - Steinway Ballads / Jed Distler

Release Date: 11/03/2021
Label: Steinway & Sons Catalog #: 30194
Composer:  Edward "Duke" Ellington ,  Ted Shapiro ,  Jule Styne ,  Bill Evans  ...  Performer:  Jed Distler

The lesser-known gem, Quiet Now, by Denny Zeitlin, is the title track of this collection, also featuring music of Bill Evans and Duke Ellington and performed by pianist Jed Distler.

Album Credits:
Recorded 2014 2016 at Steinway Hall, New York City.
Producer: Jon Feidner
Engineer: Lauren Sclafani
Assistant Engineer: Melody Nieun Hwang
Production Assistant: Renée Oakford
Mixing and Mastering: Daniel Shores

Executive Producers: Eric Feidner, Jon Feidner
Art Direction: Jackie Fugere
Piano Technician: Lauren Sclafani
Piano: Steinway Model D #610511 (Hamburg)

R E V I E W:

Jed Distler is not only
Read more a critic who writes beautifully about music; he plays the piano beautifully, as well. Distler's playing is pensive and mellow, but not at all wishy-washy or meandering. He has wonderful phrasing and timing, and his chord-voicing is, if I can use the word, comforting. Does that make sense? ("Comforting" being the antithesis of "Jarring.") He also has a formidable grasp of the history of jazz-piano style.

What an interesting program! It starts with a tune by Duke Ellington and ends with a tune by John Coltrane. The Ellington tune is "Star-Crossed Lovers," from Ellington and Billy Strayhorn's Shakespeare-tribute album Such Sweet Thunder.

Erm, you did know that Ellington and Strayhorn had collaborated on a Shakespeare-tribute album, didn't you?

The Coltrane tune is "Naima." In between, there are four Bill Evans compositions, three other Ellington tunes, and single tunes by Hub Atwood, Ray Noble, Richard Rodgers, Wayne Shorter, Jule Styne, and Ted Shapiro. Denny Zeitlin's "Quiet Now" is the title track.

It's a commonplace (verging on a canard) that female-vocal recordings are unto audiophiles, as catnip is to cats. However, in my experience, that is more of a perception than a reality. I know quite a few audiophiles whose prime frame of reference for evaluating equipment, especially loudspeakers, is well-recorded solo piano. Therefore, I hereby nominate this under-appreciated gem of a recording to join the canon of High-End Audio-Fest Demo-Track Favorites. Read less