Randy Klein at the Manhattan School of Music Jazz Gala Honoring Larry Rosen and Dave Grusin
Photo: Dr. James Gandre, President of Manhattan School of Music and Randy Klein
Photo: Debra Kinzler of Manhattan School of Music and Randy Klein
Photo: Randy Klein at the Manhattan School of Music Jazz Gala 2013
MWE3.com Reviews Randy Klein’s Two Duos “What’s Next?” w/Alex Skolnick and Boris Kozlov
Jazz duo albums can sometimes be a hit and miss affair yet one that completely hits the bullseye is What’s Next? by jazz pianist Randy Klein. For the 12 track, hour long What’s Next? Randy teams with guitar virtuoso Alex Skolnick and bassist Boris Kozlov and the results are a delicate yet sonically durable outing that puts Klein’s sumptuous grand piano skills in a very favorable light. Both Skolnick and Kozlov are fine players to compliment Klein’s sensitive sounding, jazzy piano tracks. What’s Next? is actually the second CD of Randy Klein’s Two Duos album series from the pianist, the first one being 2010’s Sunday Morning, featuring Klein with trombonist Chris Washburne and saxophonist Oleg Kireyev. Guitar fans will note Skolnick’s tasteful fretboard work on What’s Next? and indeed Skolnick’s deft touch sounds quite well suited to Klein’s jazzy piano. Commenting on working with Skolnick and Kozlov on What’s Next? Klein adds, ‘These are top notch players! And when you play with players who are on this level, it really becomes a dream come true.’ Jazz fans who appreciate sensitive, varied, acoustic piano-based albums are truly well served by this album, while music fans should keep their ears open for more releases from the soon to be acclaimed series of CD releases from Randy Klein’s Two Duos on Jazzheads - the record label started by Klein back in 1992.
“What’s Next?” available on JAZZHEADS, and
Randy Klein’s Two Duos: What’s Next? is the Ringer of the Week on Jazz Weekly!
I’ve always been a sucker for jazz duets. Lonnie Johnson and Eddie Lang, Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn, Jim Hall & Pat Metheny…the list could go on forever. There’s nowhere to hide, and if you’re posing, it’s going to come out. This disc with pianist Randy Klein has him in duo setting with either guitarist Alex Skolnick or bassist Boris Kozlov, and the result is one of the most lyrical, melodic yet incisively swinging releases to come out in many moons. Klein’s got a flowing touch with an inherent sense of pulse, flow and timing, making these tunes come off like intriguing conversations between longtime friends. Skolnick’s warm guitar embraces sonatas like “Exalted Kingdom” and the luxurious “In The Twilight Hours” with delicacy while he can also give it all he’s got, yet without shouting, on the fun loving ”No.” Kozlov’s elastic and electric 6 string bass dances around “Dear Charles Mingus” with exciting fingerwork while his sensitivity is spotlighted on the lilting “Inner Voice.” All throughout, Klein keeps the mood serene yet without somnambulism. Gently gliding like a spring brook, this music is refreshing to the soul.
“What’s Next?” available on JAZZHEADS, and
Alex Skolnick on guitar with Randy Klein on piano performing ‘Casa China’ at the Jazzheads Jazz Festival in May 2012. ‘Casa China’ is a composition from Randy Klein’s Two Duos series which features pieces composed specifically by Randy Klein for an improvising duet. Check out the solo by Alex Skolnick!!!
New Release: Randy Klein’s Two Duos “What’s Next?” w/Alex Skolnick and Boris Kozlov
Pianist-Composer Randy Klein Releases Second Two Duos Project “What’s Next?” Featuring Bassist Boris Kozlov and Guitarist Alex Skolnick.
For the second in his series of Two Duos recordings, pianist-composer, Randy Klein engages in musical conversation on What’s Next?, featuring electric bass guitarist virtuoso Boris Kozlov and guitarist Alex Skolnick. What’s Next?, is the followup to his 2010 acclaimed CD, Sunday Morning, which showcased Klein in duets with trombonist, Chris Washburne and Russian saxophonist, Oleg Kireyev. This outing summons up the delicate interaction of pianist Bill Evans and guitarist Jim Hall on their classic 1962 encounter, Undercurrent, and the crystalline duets over time between Chick Corea and Gary Burton. Alternating tracks with Boris Kozlov, the Russian-born bassist, the longstanding anchor of the Mingus Big Band, and Alex Skolnick , the heavy metal turned jazz guitarist (of Testament and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra), Klein establishes an indelible hookup in the studio with his versatile duet partners.
Randy Klein’s Music on KPFA 94.1 FM
The radio show Early Morning Music with Eddy Pay on KPFA 94.1 FM radio station in Berkeley, CA continues to feature Randy Klein’s compositions: Sunday Morning and Her Beautiful Soul from CD ‘Sunday Morning’ (Jazzheads, 2010), and Inner Voice from CD ‘Love Notes From The Bass’ (Jazzheads, 1996). Thanks again, KPFA!
Mastering ‘What’s Next?’
Putting on the finishing touches. Recording and mixing engineer, Daryl Bornstein, mastering engineer, Gene Paul and pianist/composer, Randy Klein mastering What’s Next?, the new CD featuring Alex Skolnick on guitar, Boris Kozlov on electric bass guitar and Randy Klein on piano. The CD is scheduled for release on Jazzheads this October 2012.
Randy Klein’s Two Duos concert at the University of Kansas School of Music featuring Randy Klein on piano, Ole Mathisen on saxophone and Chris Washburne on trombone.
Charles Mingus, the great bassist and composer, was one of my musical heroes. He was extreme in everything he did. There is a story I heard, that he took an axe (not his!) to a really bad piano in a club. I totally relate to this. He also had a grand sense of humor and it came out in his music. Cocktails For Two from the album Charles Mingus & His Quintet Featuring Eric Dolphy - I love this track! Here are Charles Mingus LPs from my collection:
I composed a piece, Dear Charles Mingus, dedicated to him which I recorded with the esteemed bassist Harvie S on the CD, Love Notes From The Bass (Jazzheads 1994).
There are no out of tune pianos in heaven. Happy Birthday Charles Mingus!
Two Duos Rehearsal: Randy Klein and Nik Munson
Randy Klein’s Two Duos project with vocalist Nik Munson rehearsing for the upcoming Jazzheads Jazz Festival on May 4-5, 2012.