It doesn't get any sweeter
Mark A. Daniels | Waterford, CT United States | 08/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been listening to Joe Pass for about 30 years, and my first exposure was the "Vituoso" album, and I went home and almost threw my guitar in the trash. I didn't even know how to describe what I had heard. I dislike the over-used term of genius, but I will have to admit that Joe was a true genius at his craft. He had incredible facility in all aspects of music: harmony, melody, rhythm, counterpoint, dynamics, and amazing improvisational skills.
What truly astounded me was that I had thout that after Django Reinhardt, there was no way anyone could completely blow me away on solo jazz guitar. I was wrong, and Joe had his own sound and harmonic sense that was very different than Django's. In my opinion, the album "Virtuoso" stands on it's own as one of the truly great jazz recordings period. "I remember Charlie Parker"
shares some of the best qualities of "Virtuoso", but in a much more restrained and softer way. Most of the tunes are ballad-style, played on a nylon string guitar, and all played finger-style, giving the album a much more mellow, contemplative sound. It is a wonderful tribute to one of Joe's idols, Charlie Parker, and even in it's own gentle way, the songs all swing. I place this album as one of Joe's best recordings, and as one of my most favored jazz guitar albums. It is the kind of recording that you can listen to one week, come back to it a week or two later, and it sounds like you are hearing it for the first time.
I highly recommend this album."
Gibson L4CES | New York | 02/12/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album didn't immediately "wow" me when I first heard it, because I had already heard Virtuoso I and Virtuoso II. I was also in my teens when I first listened to this album. I began listening to this album again a few years ago and this time my reaction was completely different. This album along with Virtuoso, Virtuoso II, Virtuoso in New York is pure genius. What's more amazing is this is a prime example of how well Joe can play. This is not a solo recital of pre-arranged, pre-written music for solo guitar. Joe can take the melody and harmony, weave in bass lines and single note lines, change the tempo, reharmonize a tune (with beautiful and original harmonic concepts) several times in one track and do it all on the fly. It doesn't sound stitled or memorized like a classical piece of music. It flows unlike any other solo guitar playing I've ever heard. Enough with analyzing this album. It's beautiful music and I highly recommend it. It seems that everytime I listen to this album, I like it better."