Nearness finds acclaimed jazz saxophonist Joshua Redman and pianist Brad Mehldau teaming up for a set of loose yet heartfelt duo performances. Collaborators since they first began playing together in Redman's quartet in the early '90s, Mehldau and Redman have forged their own distinct solo careers. While they have continued to work together in various settings, the duo put a spotlight on their creative friendship with their 2011 tour. Nearness features live performances captured during the European leg of that tour, including tapings in Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, and Norway.
The Highway Rider is pianist and composer Brad Mehldau's second collaboration with enigmatic pop producer Jon Brion. The first was 2002's ambitious but tentative Largo. As a collaboration, The Highway Rider is much more confident by contrast. Mehldau’s most ambitious work to date, its 15 compositions are spread over two discs and 100 minutes. ~ AllMusic
Modern Music, the collaborative recording between longtime colleagues and jazz pianists Brad Mehldau and Kevin Hays, and composer and arranger Patrick Zimmerli (a mutual friend of both) is startling for its deep reliance on modern classical technique and arrangements. Certainly, Mehldau is known for dabbling in all sorts of music, from pop to classical on his recordings and in live performance. Hays, too, has branched out in recent years, from his signature, intelligent, hard swinging post-bop approach to include compositions with modern classical touches, such as those found on Piano Works, Vol. III. Zimmerli, who wrote the charts for this session, played saxophone in his younger years.
Walking Shadows is the highly anticipated new album by acclaimed saxophonist, Joshua Redman. The album, comprising twelve ballads, is Redman’s first recording to include an orchestra ensemble. Produced by Brad Mehldau, the recording features the core quartet of Brad Mehldau, Larry Grenadier and Brian Blade. Walking Shadows includes original tunes from Redman and Mehldau along with works by a wide range of composers such as John Mayer and Pino Palladino; Kern and Hammerstein; and Lennon and McCartney.
The Brad Mehldau Trio, featuring Larry Grenadier on bass and Jeff Ballard on drums, returns with Ode, an album of 11 previously unreleased songs composed by Mehldau. The record, which is the first from the trio since 2008’s Live Village Vanguard disc and the first studio trio recording since 2005’s Day Is Done, is out this week in the UK and this coming Tuesday in North America. Many of the songs on the new album were written as tributes, or “odes,” to real and fictional people, such as the late saxophonist Michael Brecker (“M.B.”), a character from the film Easy Rider (“Wyatt’s Eulogy for George Hanson”), and the guitarist Kurt Ronsenwinkel (“Kurt Vibe”).