Another day, another Beatles cover record, right?
This is Brad Mehldau, one of the finest musicians in all of music, jazz or otherwise. Melhdau has been creating miraculous records blending his love for jazz and rock and roll for years now. I first fell in love with his music upon hearing his 2002 release "Largo," the first of his records (to my knowledge) to turn the jazz world on its ears. "Largo," produced by pop genius Jon Brion, was a hodgepodge of jazz improvisation, baroque pop, and electronica, occasionally all at the same time. And while it didn't work for jazz purists, it knocked my socks off, with incredible melodies and sonics, brilliant musicianship and genius covers of songs by Radiohead, Jobim and Lennon and McCartney. There is even a song called "Sabbath" that sounds a bit like Sabbath. From the opening track, the glorious "When It Rains," I was hooked on this piano player.
Many years, records and a few live performances later, I still look forward to anything he releases. This just released record "Your Mother Should Know" is a live performance that I first heard just a few weeks after it was recorded in Paris in 2020, as some French philanthropist uploaded a perfect recording to one of the many sites I visit. The people at Nonsuch Records must have felt the same as I did, and decided it was worthy of release.
It is a solo piano performance of a handful of not-so-obvious choices and one is more beautiful than the next.
If I haven't sold you, that's okay. But I do hope you check out the two videos I've posted. I think "Baby's In Back" is nothing short of stunning.
When you're finished here, please go to YouTube and dial up "When It Rains" from Brad Mehldau's "Largo." I think it will make you happy.