Four stars relative to Oscar; otherwise, five.
Samuel Chell | Kenosha,, WI United States | 04/05/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Telarc must have flooded the market with these, overestimating the size of the audience for jazz piano. As a result the consumer stands to benefit, because at just slightly beyond his 65th birthday Oscar is sounding as good as he did the previous 40 years to all but the most discriminating ears. Moreover, at 65 he's still outplaying anyone else at any age.
This is in many respects an ideal trio/quartet. Apart from the fact that they hadn't been playing as a unit for over thirty years, it was arguably Oscar's best. Listeners should not be too quick to discount the contributions of Bobby Durham, the least heralded member but one of those power-percussionist/drummer-athletes so essential to Oscar's maintaining the pianist's unforgiving, practically superhuman tempos.
The Telarcs lack some of the presence and brightness of the MPS "Exclusively for My Friends Series," recorded in the '60s by Hans Brunner-Schwer, not only the most fastidious of audiophiles but a producer who saw to it that Oscar was given his preferred Bosendorfer to play (the piano at the Blue Note, probably a Steinway, clearly doesn't have that kind of muscle).
In sum, not a bad Oscar Peterson recording even if it's your first. Oscar can even be heard resuming some of the moanin' and groanin' that he was noted for in the fifties (maybe not a good idea, since it would not be long before he would suffer a stroke). The most extraordinary Oscar Peterson on record--perhaps a bit "too" overwhelming for some listeners--is still to be found on the Verve dates sans drums from the fifties, especially "At the Stratford Shakespearean Festival" and "At the Concertegebouw.""
Lend An Ear To Oscar Peterson's Last Call At The Blue Note
Rebecca*rhapsodyinblue* | CA USA | 06/09/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Oscar Peterson is the best jazz pianist in the world." ~ Down Beat Readers Poll: First Place, Eleven Times ~
"...Last Call At The Blue Note" is one of the best albums from Oscar Peterson Trio featuring himself on piano, Herb Ellis on guitar, Bobby Durham on drums and Ray Brown on bass. It was recorded live at a premiere jazz club in New York City, Blue Note, on March 18, 1990 and was released in 1992 by Telarc, a trusted name when it comes to top-notch jazz recordings.
I love this recording for two main reasons - "Yours Is My Heart Alone" and one of his very own compositions, "Wheatland." I selected these beautiful tunes to be the highpoints of this live recording, which clearly displayed the excellent musicianship of Peterson and his sidemen who worked as a team in presenting to their live audiences a wonderful program that will never disappoint.
I wholeheartedly recommend this live recording to any dedicated fan of "the best jazz pianist in the world."
Last of the Giants
S J Buck | Kent, UK | 01/11/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With Oscar Petersons passing 3 weeks ago we lost one of the two remaining Jazz Piano Giants whose careers went back to the late 1940's (the other is Dave Brubeck). Peterson was a giant in every sense. 250lbs in weight and over 6ft tall but luckily for us a giant of Jazz Piano as well.
This recording is also part of a four disc set and contains at the moment the last available recordings before he had a stroke and lost most of the use of his left hand for the rest of his career. So here he still in near peak form. Herb Ellis is on guitar, Ray Brown is on bass and Bobby Durham is on drums.
Evidence of Petersons great talent can found throughout the album. I'd give special mention to "Yours is my Heart alone", which was always a showstopper. "Wheatland" is a beautiful tune and one of his best compositions. Peterson wrote a lot more quality music than he is ever given credit for. "Blues Etude" is Oscars encore to end all encores. As always taken at a furious tempo, and incorporating elements of fast be-bop, blues, boogie-woogie, stride Piano and a lot more besides. This track makes you realise what a devastating blow it must have been when he lost the use of his left-hand. I imagine this is the kind of encore Oscar Peterson played in his younger days in case there were any Pianists out there who thought they were going to follow him!
It only get 4 stars (would have been 4 and a half) from me because there are better Oscar Peterson albums to get ahead of this one. Unbelieveable as that statement sounds in the 1950's 60's and 70's his playing was just a little sharper than it is here. We are talking very small differences, but try his 1970 solo album "Tracks" or "The Trio" from a couple of years later and you'll see what I mean."