Track Selection 1: Summertime
Track Selection 2: Show-Type Tune
Bill Evans (p) Chuck Israels (b) Paul Motian (d) recorded NYC, May 17 &29, 5th June , 1962 recording engineer Bill Shwartau
Taken from the same sessions which formed RLP 428 “Moon Beams”. Chuck Israels settling in as replacement for bassist Scot Lafaro, who died the previous year. Israels is no light-weight. He holds a steady supportive bass, while Paul Motian washes, fills and colours, anchoring the rhythm section to let Evans shine.
AllMusic puts the technical words together better than me:
“Summertime” … sounds so different with its mid-tempo opening and Israel’s flaunting bass vamp in front of the piano. When Evans gets to the melody he is following the swinging skip of Motian ‘s drums, and he digs deep into inverting the melody line with a slew of arpeggios and short, choppy phrases”
You think you know “Summertime”? The tune has the barest outline, more in your memory than the recording. That is the beauty of Bill Evans, the seemingly effortless, perfectly placed cascade of notes darting in and out, tugging at, dancing on top of the melody, always a surprise and delight, like the taste of fine champagne.
Vinyl: UK Riverside RLP 473
Mono UK Riverside first release. Evans recorded for Riverside up until 1962, with “How My Heart Sings!” the last but one of thirteen titles before signing to Milestone and Verve, and eventually Fantasy. Riverside UK releases were initially pressed by Decca, but eventually shifted to Phillips, who pressed this one in Holland.
Atmospheric, chiaroscuro cover. Against the conventions of portraiture, Evans gaze leads out of the picture, creating a visual tension as the viewer seeks to “make sense” of what Evans can see that they can’t. The catch-lights on the glasses add to the sense of place. Great portrait.
Sorry download people, acolytes of the Evil Silver Disc too, there is nothing like a physical Sixties glossy laminated beautiful record cover.It doesn’t matter that you can fit 50,000 songs in a matchbox-size microdrive, you can’t fit this in anything except a large IKEA Expedit cabinet.
It’s a personal thing, but I find hand-held devices invite you to flit from one track to another, I’m as much a victim as anyone else. There is always another track to skip to, one better than the one you just chose. Combine infinite choice and fear of missing out with a fickle attention span and you lose sight of the integrity an album, its artistic intent.
The artists are at a particular stage in their development, the music is in the style of the moment, the influences all around it. Helpfully, vinyl requires you sit still and absorb twenty or forty minutes of that artist and material. Active extended listening is how music should be heard – absorbed organically, through the skin.
Phillips Dutch pressing, mono
Source: eBay Location: UK
Sellers Description: Record VG+ Sleeve Condition: VG
Evan’s Riversides offer a solid body of his work. The LaFaro titles have the most frightening telepathic three-way communication, but the Israels Trio is strong in its own way, and easily overlooked in the stampede for the Village Vanguard sessions and Waltz for Debby. It is also therapeutic for a change to listen to music without a horn playing. Sort of whets the appetite.
Guy thinks he can see a figure in the catchlights. Decide for yourselves – I can just make out a figure on our left – I guess the photographer – in a white T-shirt framed by the window of the room.