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  • May 22, 2018

    Brad Mehldau has shared the story behind the title track to his new Trio album, Seymour Reads The Constitution!, in a new essay. "In 2014, I had a dream that the actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was reading the American Constitution to me," he begins. You can read what he has to say here.

  • May 18, 2018

    Brad Mehldau Trio's new album, Seymour Reads the Constitution! , is out now. The pianist and his longtime trio—drummer Jeff Ballard and bassist Larry Grenadier—perform three Mehldau originals combined with interpretations of pop songs (Paul McCartney, Brian Wilson), jazz tunes (Elmo Hope, Sam Rivers), and the American songbook (Frederick Loewe). "This is sumptuous, collective improvisation of the highest order," exclaims The Arts Desk's five-star review. "It's so good, it sounds effortless ... Gorgeous."

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About Brad Mehldau

  • Jazz pianist Brad Mehldau has recorded and performed extensively since the early 1990s. Mehldau’s most consistent output over the years has taken place in the trio format. Starting in 1996, his group released a series of five records on Warner Bros. entitled The Art of the Trio. Mehldau also has a solo piano recording entitled Elegiac Cycle, and a record called Places that includes both solo piano and trio songs. Elegiac Cycle and Places might be called “concept” albums. They are made up exclusively of original material and have central themes that hover over the compositions. Other Mehldau recordings include Largo, a collaborative effort with the innovative musician and producer Jon Brion, and Anything Goes—a trio outing with bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jorge Rossy.

    His first record for Nonesuch, Brad Mehldau Live in Tokyo, was released in 2004. After ten rewarding years with Rossy playing in Mehldau’s regular trio, drummer Jeff Ballard joined the band in 2005. The label released its first album from the Brad Mehldau Trio—Day is Done—in 2005.

    Mehldau’s musical personality forms a dichotomy. He is first and foremost an improviser, and greatly cherishes the surprise and wonder that can occur from a spontaneous musical idea that is expressed directly, in real time. But he also has a deep fascination for the formal architecture of music, and it informs everything he plays. In his most inspired playing, the actual structure of his musical thought serves as an expressive device. As he plays, he listens to how ideas unwind, and the order in which they reveal themselves. Each tune has a strongly felt narrative arch, whether it expresses itself in a beginning, an end, or something left intentionally open-ended. The two sides of Mehldau’s personality—the improviser and the formalist—play off each other, and the effect is often something like controlled chaos.

    Mehldau has performed around the world at a steady pace since the mid-1990s, with his trio and as a solo pianist. His performances convey a wide range of expression. There is often an intellectual rigor to the continuous process of abstraction that may take place on a given tune, and a certain density of information. That could be followed by a stripped down, emotionally direct ballad. Mehldau favors juxtaposing extremes. He has attracted a sizeable following over the years, one that has grown to expect a singular, intense experience in his performance.

    In addition to his trio and solo projects, Mehldau has worked with a number of great jazz musicians, including a rewarding gig with saxophonist Joshua Redman’s band for two years, recording and concerts with Charlie Haden and Lee Konitz, and recording as a sideman with the likes of Wayne Shorter, John Scofield, and Charles Lloyd. For more than a decade, he has collaborated with several musicians and peers whom he respects greatly, including the guitarists Peter Bernstein and Kurt Rosenwinkel and tenor saxophonist Mark Turner. Mehldau also has played on a number of recordings outside of the jazz idiom, like Willie Nelson’s Teatro and singer-songwriter Joe Henry’s Scar. His music has appeared in several movies, including Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut and Wim Wender’s Million Dollar Hotel. He also composed an original soundtrack for the French film, Ma Femme Est Une Actrice. Mehldau recently composed two new works commissioned by Carnegie Hall for voice and piano, The Blue Estuaries and The Book of Hours: Love Poems to God, which were performed in the spring of 2005 with the acclaimed classical soprano, Renée Fleming. These songs were recorded with Fleming and released in 2006 on the Love Sublime record; simultaneously, Nonesuch released an album of Mehldau’s jazz compositions for trio entitled House on Hill. In March 2007, Mehldau debuted the piano concerto The Brady Bunch Variations for piano and orchestra at Théâtre du Chatelet in Paris with Orchestre National d’Ile-de-France.

Brad Mehldau

Tour

Mon, Jul 2
Montreux
Montreux Jazz Club @ House of Jazz
Mon, Jul 2
Montreux
Montreux Jazz Club @ House of Jazz
Tue, Jul 3
Lübeck
Musik- und Kongresshalle Lübeck
Tue, Jul 3
Lübeck
Musik- und Kongresshalle Lübeck
Thu, Jul 5
Gent
Thu, Jul 5
Gent
Fri, Jul 6
Copenhagen
DR Koncerthuset
Fri, Jul 6
Copenhagen
DR Koncerthuset
Sat, Jul 7
Warsaw
Stodoła
Sat, Jul 7
Warsaw
Stodoła
Mon, Jul 9
Madrid
Real Jardín Botánico Alfonso XIII, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Mon, Jul 9
Madrid
Real Jardín Botánico Alfonso XIII, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Tue, Jul 10
Valencia
Palau de la Música de València
Tue, Jul 10
Valencia
Palau de la Música de València
Thu, Jul 12
Alicante
Auditorio de la Diputación de Alicante
Thu, Jul 12
Alicante
Auditorio de la Diputación de Alicante
Fri, Jul 13
Málaga
Fri, Jul 13
Málaga
Sat, Jul 14
Ostuni
Posto Unico
Sat, Jul 14
Ostuni
Posto Unico
nonesuch's picture
on May 29, 2008 - 7:06pm
Sort Name: 
Mehldau
Artist Genre: 
Biography (Excerpt): 

After Bach comprises Brad Mehldau's recordings of four preludes and one fugue from J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier, each followed by an After Bach piece written by Mehldau and inspired by its WTC mate. "There have always been elements of Mehldau’s style that recall Bach," writes Timo Andres in the liner note. "After Bach surveys their shared ground as keyboardists, improvisers, and composers, making implicit parallels explicit."

Biography: 

Jazz pianist Brad Mehldau has recorded and performed extensively since the early 1990s. Mehldau’s most consistent output over the years has taken place in the trio format. Starting in 1996, his group released a series of five records on Warner Bros. entitled The Art of the Trio. Mehldau also has a solo piano recording entitled Elegiac Cycle, and a record called Places that includes both solo piano and trio songs. Elegiac Cycle and Places might be called “concept” albums. They are made up exclusively of original material and have central themes that hover over the compositions. Other Mehldau recordings include Largo, a collaborative effort with the innovative musician and producer Jon Brion, and Anything Goes—a trio outing with bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jorge Rossy.

His first record for Nonesuch, Brad Mehldau Live in Tokyo, was released in 2004. After ten rewarding years with Rossy playing in Mehldau’s regular trio, drummer Jeff Ballard joined the band in 2005. The label released its first album from the Brad Mehldau Trio—Day is Done—in 2005.

Mehldau’s musical personality forms a dichotomy. He is first and foremost an improviser, and greatly cherishes the surprise and wonder that can occur from a spontaneous musical idea that is expressed directly, in real time. But he also has a deep fascination for the formal architecture of music, and it informs everything he plays. In his most inspired playing, the actual structure of his musical thought serves as an expressive device. As he plays, he listens to how ideas unwind, and the order in which they reveal themselves. Each tune has a strongly felt narrative arch, whether it expresses itself in a beginning, an end, or something left intentionally open-ended. The two sides of Mehldau’s personality—the improviser and the formalist—play off each other, and the effect is often something like controlled chaos.

Mehldau has performed around the world at a steady pace since the mid-1990s, with his trio and as a solo pianist. His performances convey a wide range of expression. There is often an intellectual rigor to the continuous process of abstraction that may take place on a given tune, and a certain density of information. That could be followed by a stripped down, emotionally direct ballad. Mehldau favors juxtaposing extremes. He has attracted a sizeable following over the years, one that has grown to expect a singular, intense experience in his performance.

In addition to his trio and solo projects, Mehldau has worked with a number of great jazz musicians, including a rewarding gig with saxophonist Joshua Redman’s band for two years, recording and concerts with Charlie Haden and Lee Konitz, and recording as a sideman with the likes of Wayne Shorter, John Scofield, and Charles Lloyd. For more than a decade, he has collaborated with several musicians and peers whom he respects greatly, including the guitarists Peter Bernstein and Kurt Rosenwinkel and tenor saxophonist Mark Turner. Mehldau also has played on a number of recordings outside of the jazz idiom, like Willie Nelson’s Teatro and singer-songwriter Joe Henry’s Scar. His music has appeared in several movies, including Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut and Wim Wender’s Million Dollar Hotel. He also composed an original soundtrack for the French film, Ma Femme Est Une Actrice. Mehldau recently composed two new works commissioned by Carnegie Hall for voice and piano, The Blue Estuaries and The Book of Hours: Love Poems to God, which were performed in the spring of 2005 with the acclaimed classical soprano, Renée Fleming. These songs were recorded with Fleming and released in 2006 on the Love Sublime record; simultaneously, Nonesuch released an album of Mehldau’s jazz compositions for trio entitled House on Hill. In March 2007, Mehldau debuted the piano concerto The Brady Bunch Variations for piano and orchestra at Théâtre du Chatelet in Paris with Orchestre National d’Ile-de-France.

Weight: 
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Facebook URL: 
http://www.facebook.com/BradMehldau
Twitter URL: 
https://twitter.com/bradmehldau
Artist Header Image: 
Artist Card Image: 
Artist Spotlight Image: 
Youtube URL: 
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL6DDE26AB3466DDA8

Tour

Mon, Jul 2
Montreux
Montreux Jazz Club @ House of Jazz
Mon, Jul 2
Montreux
Montreux Jazz Club @ House of Jazz
Tue, Jul 3
Lübeck
Musik- und Kongresshalle Lübeck
Tue, Jul 3
Lübeck
Musik- und Kongresshalle Lübeck
Thu, Jul 5
Gent
Thu, Jul 5
Gent
Fri, Jul 6
Copenhagen
DR Koncerthuset
Fri, Jul 6
Copenhagen
DR Koncerthuset
Sat, Jul 7
Warsaw
Stodoła
Sat, Jul 7
Warsaw
Stodoła
Mon, Jul 9
Madrid
Real Jardín Botánico Alfonso XIII, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Mon, Jul 9
Madrid
Real Jardín Botánico Alfonso XIII, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Tue, Jul 10
Valencia
Palau de la Música de València
Tue, Jul 10
Valencia
Palau de la Música de València
Thu, Jul 12
Alicante
Auditorio de la Diputación de Alicante
Thu, Jul 12
Alicante
Auditorio de la Diputación de Alicante
Fri, Jul 13
Málaga
Fri, Jul 13
Málaga
Sat, Jul 14
Ostuni
Posto Unico
Sat, Jul 14
Ostuni
Posto Unico
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