Chuck Israels, the bass guitarist on this record sums it up:
"More than any other recording that I have made with Bill Evans, this one has a quality of " Surprise! You're on Candid Camera"
The ambience of this little jazz studio oozes thru the speakers into our living room and drags us into the intimacy of this live performance, one and the last of two recorded on the Riverside label by Bill Evans. It was recorded in May 1963.
The 45RPM recording is way more realistic and accurate than any 33RPM could do, and it compensates greatly for the small inconvenience of having only two tracks per side of the 2-record set.
Acoustic Sounds has been releasing these jazz jewels on 45RPM vinyls for over 20 years, well before the current so-called "revival".
Rush to the website with your credit card at the ready before it solds out.
My (or should I say, my daughter's...) copy is numbered 0741, probably out of 1000, so hurry up: this is one of the best performance of Bill Evans, one of a few live recording available on vinyl (I own the entire collection of "Bill Evans live in Paris" on CD, which is a private collection by INA, the French national audio and video archive), and of historical significance as the last recording of Bill Evans on the Riverside label. Enjoy!
There is no need to present this classic originally released by CBS in 1959, now a Sony label and republished recently by Music on Vinyl, a Dutch (thanks, Mario...) label specialising in high quality vinyl reissues of jazz classics and more.
This is actually a disc from my daughter's collection - she is a keen jazz enthusiast, happily listening to Charlie Mingus, Miles Davis and Bill Evans as well as more classic jazz players.
On this record, Blue Rondo a la Turk and Take Five have taken a life of their own, and I would surprised if I were to find somebody not knowing them.
BTW, I am planning to give you snippets of each disc reviewed at a later stage, once I have mastered the software driving the USB output of my new phono stage.
The drums and the bass guitar are the absolute stars of this recording.
During some of the solos, it was like having the drummer in the room (without the neighbours calling the police...)
I have recently upgraded my system, (see hardware page for details in an upcoming post...) and got myself a Blu Ray DVD and CD player from Samsung, my Pioneer DVD/SACD having reached its used by date by simply refusing to play any disc.
So, I needed new software to go with the new player and heard that this memorable concert was finally available in Blu Ray.
Got the last copy at my favourite retailer
and off I went to listen to it - and that was before upgrading my preamp...
well, I almost threw my turntable away!!!
This is the very first time that I listen to "Private Investigations" and find it better by a notch or two at least than my beloved vinyl version. The video part obviously shows the passage of time, but is still a fabulous document if you are a 16mm enthusiast...but interestingly enough, the sound track is pure bliss.
The bass extension in particular is just out of this world - and I thought my speakers could not reach those very low frequencies...
G.I.G.O as Ivor Tiefenbrun would say - garbage in, garbage out...
since then, I have upgraded the preamp with an external phono stage.
I will have to do the comparison again and come back to you, but I am sure i am in for more surprises along the way.
Born in France, well travelled, relocated to Sydney in 1997.