Joey Calderazzo – Amanecer
(Marsalis Music – 2007)
by Paula Edelstein
Joey Calderazzo’s previous release comprised completely of solo performances titled HAIKU established him as one of jazz’s premier pianists. His equally significant sophomore release titled Amanecer captures his musical growth as a solo artist in addition to capturing his prowess with vocalist Claudia Acuna and guitarist Romero Lubambo. His stellar performances with the vocalist and guitarist can be heard on the title track, “The Lonely Swan,” (which was also included on Marsalis’ exquisite recording titled ETERNAL) “So Many Moons,” and “Lara.” Produced by Branford Marsalis for Marsalis Music/Rounder Records label, Calderazzo’s technique has been a longstanding complement to Marsalis’ brilliant quartet sessions.
However, Amanecer is Calderazzo’s complete philosophy of perfection in both musical and technical takes in solo, duo and trio settings all gained from years of touring and the commitment to stand on his own. Included is one of Calderazzo’s most popular compositions “Midnight Voyage” which he introduced on Michael Brecker’s 1996 recording TALES FROM THE HUDSON. In further tribute to the late Mr. Brecker, Calderazzo added both “Amanecer” which he originally recorded as “Cat’s Cradle” on Brecker’s 1997 release titled TWO BLOCKS FROM THE EDGE, and “Sea Glass” a tune Calderazzo had performed with Brecker in a trio setting. However, his solo treatments take on an even deeper impact because of the untimely death of Brecker in early 2007.
Since hearing the pianist in a number of venues including the Monterey Jazz Festival, the Playboy Jazz Festival, among others, as both a solo pianist and within The Branford Marsalis Quartet, Calderazzo has strengthened his technique and has gone from Joey Calderazzo the pianist to Joey Calderazzo the complete musician, composer and interpreter.