On Sunday November 30, I received my first Christmas present. I got tickets to see Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette perform live at NJPAC in Newark, NJ. I never saw Keith in person, and I had very high expectations. I can only say that my high expectations were exceeded with not only Keith but also the performance of Keith's partners of over 30 years, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette. NJPAC had advertised the concert as "Jazz Geniuses in Concert", and they captured the happening perfectly!
The audience consisted of a mix of ages, from early 20's to some who were in their 80's. What I found as remarkable was the absolute respect the entire audience held for Keith and his remarkable side men. Every time Keith approached the piano, there was total silence in a room packed with an overflow of Jazz lovers. I have never experience this respectful tribute to any other Jazz musician I have heard live.
Keith Jarrett is universally recognized as one of the most creative improvisers of Jazz Piano. His brilliance is aided by his Classical educational which brings improvised Jazz to wonderful heights that elevate his listeners to Jazz heaven. The word genius is overused at lot especially in the music world, but there is no better word that describes the music Keith creates!
Performing tonight with Keith were two other musical giants, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette. Gary Peacock is still playing world-class Bass at the highest level at 79 years of age and still supports Keith's improvisations like he was his twin brother. Supporting a genius Jazz piano player like Keith is, in my opinion, one of the most difficult assignments for even the most talented high-level professional musician. Keith travels his own path through some of the greatest standards ever written; and, therefore, nothing for Gary or Jack is on automatic pilot. Gary's solos were a perfect compliment for Keith's emotional renditions of classic songs, like "I Fall In Love Too Easily".
Jack DeJohnette is a remarkable drummer. He is one of the greatest drummers in Jazz history and hearing him support Keith and Jack leaves the listener with no doubt of his brilliance. Jack proves that there is so much more to playing Drums that simply loudly keeping time. He is a student of sounds and uses his percussion instruments like a scientist working in a lab constantly looking for even the slightest variations of sounds to support the construction of this trio's wonderful music.
The trio is touring and I recommend that you make every effort to see them if they get close to where you live. To hear this group live is a Jazz experience of a lifetime!
I found a "YouTube" that I have attached below to remind you of the brilliance of Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette. This "YouTube" was recorded live in 1993.