Hasse: Classical Jazz
September 30, 2016
|1||Night Music (after F. Chopin’s Nocturne No. 6 in G||00:04:02||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|2||Pyotr’s Piano Concerto (after P. Tchaikovsky’s Pia||00:03:32||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|3||A Bit of Brahms (after J. Brahms Symphony No. 3 in||00:04:02||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|4||Maurice’s Pavane (after M. Ravel’s Pavane pour une||00:04:45||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|5||Gabey’s Pavane (after G. Faure’s Pavane, Op. 50)||00:04:15||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|6||Freddie Goes to Church (after F. Chopin’s 12 Etude||00:05:31||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|7||Feelin’ Pretty (after L. Bernstein’s I Feel Pretty||00:03:14||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|8||Seriously Pathetique (after L. van Beethoven’s Pia||00:05:05||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|9||Paradise Is Strange (after A. Borodin’s Prince Igo||00:04:04||Haase, Gary|
|10||Yes, It’s Magic (after F. Chopin’s 24 Preludes, Op||00:03:42||Haase, Gary|
|11||In the Beginning (after F. Chopin’s 24 Preludes, O||00:04:40||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
|12||Basically Bach (after J.S. Bach’s BWV 1068: II. Ai||00:03:33||Haase, Gary New York Ensemble, The|
When I spun this platter and began to listen to it along with reading the liner notes I immediately wanted to classify this release as a ‘crossover’ that loosely took classical melodies and gave them a jazzy feel and sound. After listening to it for a second time I came to the conclusion that this was not a ‘crossover’ but a concept that has been tried before, but this attempt with Gary Haase and The New York Ensemble was different in the arrangements. There sounded like there was little or no improvisation but well written structured arrangements that drift a little but not too far. That hard to understand feeling wasn’t there. It almost leans toward elevator music but there is enough jazz with the chordal changes and harmonic adaptions . I think that some of the melodies chosen such as Bach’s popular melody lend themselves to this style of music.
My two favorite tracks on the CD are Feeling Pretty (L. Bernstein), classical in a very broad sense. Haase provides us with some very nice keyboard work and the brass section definitely enhances the arrangement. The other favorite is Stranger in Paradise from the opera Prince Igor by Borodin. It features from very nice trumpet work with an able backing from harmonic strings. There are also selections from Brahms, Bach, Chopin, Tchaikovsky, and Faure.
Haase has crafted a fine score that the jazz listener will want to have in his collection. He has a good feel for the keyboard. I’m not so sure about the classical listener, although the casual one may find it to their liking.