Joanne Brackeen
Contemporary Jazz
Release Date

What can you say about a musician who by the time of this 1978 recording had already been an integral part of groups led by Art Blakey, Joe Henderson, and Stan Getz? And then you have Tony Bennett calling Joanne Brackeen “a visionary of extraordinary depth”, and the legendary Bill Evans praising her as “a pianist-composer of phenomenal capacity”. Here we have “the Picasso of jazz piano” soloing on her own compositions. There is the Tyneresque power of Foreign Ray, the majestic fantasy within Mythical Magic; the quirky pointillism of Hobbits moves seamlessly into the more straight-ahead changes and swing of Told You So. Phantom’s Forum presents the listener with a phantasmagoria of fevered musical images, as Transition progresses towards the contemporary classical. Of Gnomes in Dances is serious fun – a wild, whirling piece with a hint of Latin in the steps. The emotive Now or Never sounds the time for romance, and the intensely abstract Minued closes out an album that takes the listener to so many unexpected, exciting, thought-provoking places – pure delight.

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