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Joshua Redman Quartet, Brad Mehldau Trio offer powerful sets at Walt Disney Hall

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Joshua Redman Quartet and Brad Mehldau Trio at Walt Disney Hall

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The Joshua Redman Quartet featuring pianist Aaron Goldberg, bassist Reuben Rogers and drummer Gregory Hutchinson performed several of Redman’s original compositions and jazz classics that he wrote and chose specifically for this group of musicians. Among the highly energetic and hard-swinging melodic and soulful songs performed tonight (sans orchestra) were selections from his 2013 ballad-oriented album titled Walking Shadows. The group’s concept for Blonde Redhead’s “Doll Is Mine,” had it slowed down and played like an old school soul ballad with a different approach to the drum beat—something much more fluid, nuanced and subtle. The song’s atmosphere and groove was quiet and peaceful with a melancholic bluesy expression. Hoagy Carmichael’s “Stardust” was just as beautiful, warm and rich. Redman’s unmistakable saxophone sounds made this song new again as he shared its lasting beauty. The audience showed their appreciation several times throughout their set for the group's extended solos and impeccable interpretations of Redman’s originals and classic jazz ballads. The ensemble closed with the lighting fast “DGAF” which left everyone in awe of Redman’s virtuosity,circular breathing, and exceptional interplay with his bandmates. Redman’s added dance steps and gestures made for even greater entertainment as the audience cheered during a standing ovation at the end of their show.

The Brad Mehldau Trio showed the audience what true love and devotion really means during their one hour set. Playing such favorites as “It’s Almost Like Being In Love,” and Johnny Mandell’s exquisite “Where Do You Start,” Mehldau’s pianism was inspired and fascinating. Bandmates Jeff Ballard on drums and bassist Larry Grenadier and their pervading rhythmic intensity provided the perfect foil for Mehldau’s exceptional work on “Spiral,” “De-Dah,” and “Seymour Reads the Constitution.” Overall, this concert had everything, dramatic stimuli, great interplay and the varied repertoire that kept the audience dedicated to their every note.

For more information about upcoming concerts presented by the LA Phil, please visit their website at www.laphil.org.

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