New York String Trio With Anthony Davis
Label: Music and Arts Programs of America
The new arrangements here (of famous tunes by Monk, Mingus and Ellington) for string trio plus Anthony Davis' piano are all hip. But the big news is the recording debut of a composition by Davis himself, specifically tailored for these players. "Happy Valley Blues" flowers from a pensive opening section into moments of ecstatic, abstracted blues that sound as if in dialogue with Bartok's chamber music. In 15 minutes, the piece establishes itself as a milestone of true jazz-classical hybridism, an achievement on par with the classical writing by, well, Ellington and Mingus.