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Denny Zeitlin - Precipice (Solo Piano Concert) [Live] - Precipice

Sunnyside Records
Catalog #: SSC 1253
Released 2010
Produced and Arranged by Denny Zeitlin

Recording: Ralston Hall, Santa Barbara, CA, January, 2008

Denny Zeitlin – Piano  

Video: "Denny Zeitlin: Precipice - The Challenge of Solo Piano"
        Denny discusses his new CD and the challenges of solo piano performance  
Track Listing
1 Free Prelude/What Is This Thing Called Love?/Fifth House  Part One  6:06
   Soundclip:  The piece begins with a free improvisation

2 Free Prelude/What Is This Thing Called Love?/Fifth House  Part Two  6:16
   Soundclip:  Fading in on the ostinato vamp section

3 Out Of My Dreams  4:49
   Soundclip:  The opening statement of the melody

4 On The March  10:04
   Soundclip:  The thematic opening, with gradual addition of voices

5 The We Of Us  8:46
   Soundclip:  This original ballad begins with an improvised introduction

6 Deluge  6:58
   Soundclip:  One of my all-time favorite Wayne Shorter compositions

7 Oleo  2:44
   Soundclip:  a fast tempo, high energy treatment of Sonny Rollins' classic tune

8 Love Theme From "Invasion Of The Body Snatchers"  6:53
   Soundclip:  The haunting love theme for the last two humans on earth

9 Pulsar  6:33
   Soundclip:  An original composition in 7/4 with an Afro-Cuban feel

10 Precipice  8:40
   Soundclip:  The title tune of the concert, on the edge from the start



"[ 4 STARS–Highest Rating] …In 2010 Zeitlin is as voluptuously a part of the piano as any pianist in jazz, which means that now, at 72, he is one of a handful of greatest living jazz pianists, absolutely on the same level, I think, as Keith Jarrett and Herbie Hancock… as a result, this live January 2008 recital in Santa Barbara's Ralston Hall is something of a godsend. There is, at this stage, no such thing as a new Zeitlin disc that is anything short of precious… an amazing solo piano performance…"
      Jeff Simon, New York, The Buffalo News

"In 2010, after seventy years at the piano, and many excellent albums, Zeitlin has created his personal masterpiece with Precipice…a perfect solo piano album."
      Dan McClenaghan,

"Denny Zeitlin has never shied away from the challenge of performing without a net… but then again, for an artist this intensely individualistic, cerebral and expansively inspired, such a setting seems only natural… solo performance may indeed be a precipice, but Denny Zeitlin is one of the best tightrope walkers around: sure footed, clear-eyed and brilliantly daring."
      Forrest Dylan Bryant, Jazztimes

"…The experience is at once predictably exquisite as it creates a state of a type of suspended animation, floating with utter weightless abandon… throughout the program, Zeitlin does something else with verve and splendor: he swings like the wickedest cat since Art Tatum… this album is a timeless masterpiece from one of the greatest exponents of virtuoso pianoforte in the last two centuries–Denny Zeitlin."
      Raul d'Gama Rose,

"The Denny Zeitlin career has challenged any ordinary sense concerning a master of jazz trajectory. He has twice won the prestigious Down Beat magazine award, has played with the top ranking instrumental jazz musicians of any time, has composed for a Hollywood Thriller and Sesame Street, and besides this has recorded more than 30 CD(s) with his characteristic outstanding performance on piano. The more recent CD delivered last May, named Precipice, shows him in an indescribable creative state of grace."
      Roberto Nascimento, O Estado de Sao Paulo ( Brazil)

"Precipice indeed brings together the many shades of Denny of the true geniuses of modern keyboard improvisation, whether alone or in good company. On Precipice, that good company is Denny Zeitlin's own two hands."
      Andrea Canter,

"Denny Zeitlin is a pianist like no other. No one in the world of jazz is anything like him…Denny Zeitlin is exceptional…he remains directly on the edge of the precipice…so many beautiful things…and we who are touched by his beauties, live them, breathe them; they caress us and we cherish them…the singularity of the moment—that's where you'll find the music of "Precipice"…constantly renewed, the flashes of serenity and inspiration of Denny Zeitlin's piano unveils the solitude common to us all."
      Michel Arcens, CitizenJazz (France)

"[Editor's Picks] In pianist Denny Zeitlin's words, performing a solo concert is "wonderfully limitless and challenging." And, of course, such a context lends itself to the dangerous feeling of never being far from the edge of a cliff–hence, the title track. Still, the end result proves that this challenge wasn't too daunting for the acclaimed jazz veteran…"
      Aaron Cohen, Downbeat

"…Whether in tricky time signature, loving discourse of lyrical proportions, or the occasional angular flight of fancy, Denny Zeitlin's expertise shines through familiar music and the spontaneously derived jazz that marks him a true master of the idiom, time after time."
      Michael G. Nastos,

"…from the free form opening of the record, Denny Zeitlin embraces the entire keyboard…open and highly original improvisations from a pianist who seems to know the entire history of jazz piano, and delights in dipping his fingers into the blues… the title, "Precipice," is a real masterpiece, a tireless 8 minute resume of Zeitlin's deep pianistic depth and range…"
      Pierre Chocqueuse, Blogdechoc (France)

"Denny Zeitlin is demanding, in a glorious way. He approaches the piano as an Impressionist, letting his heart and soul dictate what he does with standards and original compositions. Sometimes the journey can take a bit of time. But that journey is always an adventure with Denny. He's like the kid at the beach who's furiously working with a shovel. If you spend time watching what's going on, you realize that the kid is assembling one seriously amazing sand castle…"
      Marc Myers, JazzWax

"…his many fans will welcome this stunning solo piano concert recorded live in Santa Barbara in 2008. The well runs deep in the mind and the hands of this virtuoso pianist… Zeitlin's his own man, and he can pull you in and refuse to let you go."
      George Fendel, Jazz Society of Oregon

"……Listen to the poetry, the grace and tender soul. Listen to the humanity, its frailties and triumph. Only a true troubadour of life can impart such authority and character of pianistic language..."
      L.A. Emenari,III,

"On his superb new album, Highland Park native Denny Zeitlin – the wholly original and quite inimitable pianist who plays Club BluJazz this weekend – spends a fair amount of time out on a ledge… Precipice reaffirms Zeitlin's command of the solo idiom…"
      Neil Tesser, Chicago Jazz Examiner

"…I can't recall hearing Zeitlin's nuances with greater clarity. For that matter, I can't recall more of them. The title tune lives up to its name as it switches time signatures–or sets them aside for a while–and progresses through rhythms that stomp, dance and float. It's Zeitlin at his most orchestral… Zeitlin has divided his recorded work in the modern era more or less evenly between trio and solo albums. Those who have granted his trio albums the upper hand might do well to pay close attention to this one. It is in a league with his celebrated 1993 Maybeck performance…"
      Doug Ramsey,