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Joe Zawinul - Concerto Retitled CD (album) cover


Joe Zawinul


Jazz Rock/Fusion

2.00 | 2 ratings

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Easy Money
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Concerto Retitled is a collection of music that Joe Zawinul recorded between 1965 and 1970 that was released by Atlantic in 1976 in an apparent attempt to cash in on the rising popularity of his fusion group, Weather Report. What we have on this hurriedly slapped together mess is one horn driven hard bop tune, two third stream (jazz mixed with 20th century classical) compositions, three traditional jazz numbers and two 70s psychedelic fusion numbers. Most of these songs are good, but the way they are sequenced on this album makes no sense at all. If they had put the traditional jazz on one side with the third stream and fusion numbers on another they would have had a coherent album, instead songs are thrown together with little regard for flow or coherence.

This collection does give us a decent overview of the three albums that these songs are pulled from, Money in the Pocket, Rise and Fall of the Third Stream and Zawinul. Money in the Pocket is a mix of traditional jazz and hard bop, but I was a little disappointed in Zawinul's somewhat old-fashioned approach and harmonies. I was expecting more of Corea and Hancock's post- Bill Evans piano sound. Rise and Fall of the Third Stream presents the style of music claimed in it's title with Zawinul's acoustic piano joined by a string section with compositions that fall between Ellington styled jazz and Gershwin styled classical. Overall I would say that Duke Ellington is the major influence in Joe Zawinul's acoustic piano playing, whether he is playing traditional jazz or third stream.

For my money though, I think the album I am going to have to get someday is Zawinul, the album which provides the two outstanding psychedelic fusion numbers that close this compilation. These two songs sound like the bridge between Miles' Big Fun and Weather Report's first two albums, three albums on which Joe provided a lot of direction and creativity.

On the back of Concerto Retitled the A&R dude at Atlantic claims he was inspired to re-release this material when he saw Zawinul play a well received acoustic piano set at a Weather Report concert. I think what really happened is that when he saw Weather Report's young fans enjoying some of Joe's older music his eyes went $$!!!

Easy Money | 2/5 |


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