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Solo piano recorded live at Festival dos Capuchos, July 16, 1995
Equal-tempered piano improvisations that owe much to his lifelong study of Indian Nuusic -- a brilliant CD.
--Wall Street Journal
This concert represents about 50 years of thought, practice, composition and improvisation for that marvelous and ever challenging instrument -- the piano. I seriously started to consider my voice or role in this arena, which includes the Pantheon of my teachers and heroes, Duane Hampton, Adolf Baller, Wally Rose, Art Tatum, Bud Powell and Bill Evans, in the mid 1960s when I began formulating and composing Keyboard Studies. These works, based on very basic improvisational procedures and heavily informed by many years of study of North Indian raga and jazz, form the basis of nearly all the keyboard and piano playing I have done. Since 1984 I have performed almost exclusively with my voice (not heard on this album) and the magnificent grand piano, which opens doors to one of the most liberating forms imaginable, making available lyrical sounds, orchestral sounds, sounds that are oceanic and percussive, sounds that pulse and flow over its entire majestic range.
On this magical night in the magical city of Lisbon a kind of retrospective of my work unfolded and I felt the spirit play through me in a way that gave feelings of rare and deep emotion. Here and there are exhilarating moments in which are framed split second decisions, which opened up entirely new avenues of musical direction and exploration. And finally it must be said that, without an audience, none of this could be brought into existence in the same way. The shared attention to the sound current helps to channel the spontaneity and inspirtation that makes this experience one of life's most sacred and priveleged moments.
Riley at an inspired creative peak.
1. Arica 11:43
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