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Noble Path

1 customer review

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Audio CD, May 3, 2011
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$16.72 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 5 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Editorial Reviews

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From the relaxed, sly sense of phrasing on the engaging opener, an original called I m OK that resonates with the old-school appeal of a Tin Pan Alley chestnut, Noble Path sounds like the work of a seasoned veteran or at least a precocious talent capable of an experienced pro s taste and grace. At 39, pianist-composer Art Hirahara is somewhere in between: He s been around but is only beginning to make his mark on New York s jazz scene. Judging by his impressive debut as a leader, he s already made significant inroads. With Yoshi Waki on bass and Dan Aran on drums, Hirahara conjures up pleasant conversations on originals like Stood Down, the waltz-time Ebb and Flow and the briskly swinging title track. The trio also turns in classy interpretations of Dizzy Gillespie s Con Alma, Duke Ellington s Isfahan and Cole Porter s Ev ry Time We Say Goodbye. --Bill Milkowski - Jazz Times

Art Hirahara s new debut CD Noble Path is full of well crafted stories told in a contemporary style that borrows more from the mainstream than the modern but don t let that fool you - this is an exciting new trio with depth and width in their vision and execution. Hirahara builds tension and excitement with two hands, the left locking into full fingered voicings and the right exploring multiple runs and percussive accents that never seem to lack imagination, surprise or momentum. The opening Hirahara original, the easy going I m OK, could have come from the pen of Tadd Dameron and indeed there are four underplayed standards here rendered with great maturity and ease of expression beyond his years, Con Alma, Ellington s beautiful Isfahan, All or Nothing At All and Porter s Ev ry Time We Say Goodbye. But it is the Hirahara originals that intrigue the most with an unpredictable turn of harmony and a gradual layering of harmonic and melodic intensity those story telling hands have a lot to say. Yoshi Waki on bass and Dan Aran on drums are Hirahara s equals and for the trio s next release I want to hear many more solos especially from Waki who, with Aran, is top flight. Listen carefully and you can here how he converses but occasionally I d like to hear him make a speech! On the brilliantly constructed Noble Path his playing is superb. It sounds like this grouping has played often and after a while when you disengage your ears directly from the three music elements and focus on the shared musical thrust you feel the ebb and flow (one of Art s best originals in this collection is called Ebb and Flow) of a music that although erring on the mainstream is played by three souls who have mastered the craft of musical communication both within their trio and with the listener. From the excellent Posi-Tone label - highly recommend. --Paul Zetter - Trioriot

For his trio CD, Noble Path (Posi-Tone) the Bay area pianist Art Hirahara goes pleasurably old school, with an abundance of catchy, melodic originals. It s a successful foray into the kind of music that one associates with leaders like Kenny Barron, Cedar Walton or John Hicks, and it s clear that Hirahara holds a deep respect for musicians that ply the jazz trio tradition. Bassist Yoshi Waki and drummer Dan Aran, both rhythm masters in their own right, provide exemplary support on inspired originals ( Stood Down ) and dazzling covers ( All Or Nothing At All, Dizzy Gillespie s Con Alma. ) Hirahara has a deft technique that memorably crowns his originals and his fleet finger play positively shines on the title track. But you can sense this working group s own satisfaction when bopping through the changes on Billy Strayhorn s Isfahan or feeling the love from the music on Cole Porter s Ev ry Time We Say Goodbye. --Nick Bewsey - Jazz In Space

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
  1. I'm OK 4:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. All Or Nothing At All 4:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Stood Down 5:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Ebb And Flow 3:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Noble Path 3:38$0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Con Alma 6:02$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Peace Unknown 5:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. Change Your Look 5:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Isfahan 5:44$0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Nocturne 5:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Vast 7:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
12. Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye 6:09$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 3, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Posi-Tone Records
  • ASIN: B004KNO86U
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #299,026 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Richard Ferrie on May 28, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a deceptively beautiful and fully realized album. Where most pianists feel the need to display pyrotechnic lines that streak across the aural landscape, only to be replaced by the next even more dazzling burst, Art Hirahara pays homage to each note in a manner that is both in the jazz tradition and yet unique today. I've listened to this release in sequence as well as on random sort, and, despite 50 plus years of savoring jazz music, I hear something new each time. Oh, the virtuosity is there, somewhat carefully hidden--and only when required by what Mr. Hirahara wants to say--but the great integrity and taste in evidence here reveals a level of passion and love for the music that is profound. I have had the good fortune to see Art Hirahara in several contexts and he reveals himself over and again to be a master accompanist as well as a consumate soloist. While there must be some truth in the assertion that comparisons are odious, I find that over and again he puts me in mind of the late, great Hank Jones. I first learned that HJ could do anything when I heard his recordings of standards with Anthony Braxton; the history of jazz piano blossomed under his fingers while Braxton pushed the envelope. Only one person I've heard today seems to be carrying on this vision, this respect and love for the music, deeper than fashion, a passion that comes from the profoundest place.
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