PERFORMER: Charlie Haden’s Private Collection Nos 1 & 2
CATALOGUE NO: CD 005/6
Charlie Haden’s wonderful tone on contrabass, as much as his creative imagination, have been a benchmark of excellence in jazz since his 1959 recordings with Ornette Coleman. His act of reconciliation with the jazz mainstream was the formation of his Quartet West in 1986, with whom he has recorded four albums for Verve, notably 1994’s critically acclaimed Always Say Goodbye.
All were in the confines of the studio; here, however, at a private party given for his fiftieth birthday in 1988, the quartet plays as much for its own delight as its audience. The creative juices flow and Broadbent and Watts reveal why they are valued as such major talents in contemporary jazz. With so much product coming on to the market from fashionable young players whose work smacks of the déjà vu, it’s refreshing to hear the real thing; here is jazz that will stand the test of time. Stuart Nicholson