Nearness of You: The Ballad Bookby Michael Brecker
"Simplicity" and "understatement" are not the first words that pop to mind when considering the tonal personality of tenor saxophone icon Michael Brecker, who is famous for sculpting detailed, logical, crescendoing improvisations from swarms of notes with immaculate execution at any tempo. Yet those words define the ambiance Brecker creates on Nearness of You, a program of 11 ballads. Using John Coltrane's legendary Ballads album as a template, the master holds back, elasticizes his tone, and tells his stories at a leisurely pace. Complementing his every phrase are longtime associates Pat Metheny, guitar and producer; Herbie Hancock, piano; Charlie Haden, bass; Jack DeJohnette, drums -- each as state-of-the-art on their instrument as Brecker is on his; the all-stars play at anticipated levels of craft, subtlety and invention, and form a unit, devoting themselves unfailingly to the imperatives of ensemble interplay. The singer James Taylor contributes vocals on a reimagined "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight" (Brecker played the signifying tenor solo on its original incarnation 30 years ago) and on the title track.
- Release Date:
Performance CreditsMichael Brecker Primary Artist,Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Jack DeJohnette Drums
Herbie Hancock Piano
Pat Metheny Guitar
Charlie Haden Bass
Technical CreditsHerbie Hancock Composer
Pat Metheny Producer
Joe Zawinul Composer
James Farber Engineer
Ben Raleigh Composer
Steve Rodby Producer
Richard Seidel Executive Producer,Concept
Stevie Wonder Composer
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michael brecker has got to be one of the most talented sax players. I really love the way he interpreted the nearness of you. The whole cd is relaxing and is one that can be enjoyed by person of any age.
michael brekker mesmorizes with his jazzy ballad songs in the nearness of you. There are only 2 tracks with vocals on this cd, the rest is an amazing spectacular performance of jazz. Its a cd to be enjoyed by all ages and all lovers of music.
i recently had the opportunity to see brecker perform live at a club in dallas and it was amazing. Any sax player, jazz musician, or just average listener should own this album. I'm serious, this is one you need to get!
Fascinating is the only adjective that comes to mind for this album. Brecker and company are geniuses. The level of talent of the participants in this CD is just jaw-dropping. I never thought I'd see the day when James Taylor and Jazz would go together (although he only sings on 2 tracks) It is utterly amazing. Thank you Michael Brecker. That is quite an ensemble. James should sing more jazz standards. His voice is clearly not just for folk rock, country or pop.