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Arild Andersen Steps Out Front With “Celebration”

Arild Andersen: CelebrationFor more than four decades, Norwegian bassist Arild Andersen has been a foundation in the sound of ECM Records. His recordings for the label include work with Bill Frisell, Kenny Wheeler, Paul Motian and many others.

Now, the bassist has just released Celebration, an album consisting of music from ECM’s catalog. The six track collection features Andersen as the lead voice in front of the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra, a group in which Calum Gourlay provides low end support. It was recorded live in 2010 on tour.

“[Director Tommy Smith] asked me if I could imagine a project to celebrate ECM, with me as the soloist up front with a full rhythm section, including a second bassist, behind me,” Andersen said. “We began to think about how that could work, and discussed the choice of material. I soon decided that I wanted to put the emphasis on strongly melodic compositions which would sound good on the bass…”

Among the tracks to check out is Keith Jarrett’s “My Song,” which Andersen wanted to keep close to its original vibe. “The original is such a classic recording,” he said. “In our version you have the bass playing solo, with double-stops, very close to the melody. What’s happening around the melody is very different, but on the double-bass I’m attempting to keep to the spirit and the emotional feeling of Keith’s piano playing.”

Celebration is available on CD and in digital format (iTunes and Amazon MP3).

Preview and download Celebration:

Celebration Track List:

  1. May Dance
  2. Molde Canticle, Part 1
  3. Crystal Silence
  4. Ulrikas Dans
  5. Independency, Part 4
  6. My Song

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