LIVE REVIEW: Redman, Mehldau Take Freedom Seriously

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Friday October 14, 2011

Redman, Mehldau take freedom seriously at Williams Center
By:Dave Howell

On Thursday night, at Lafayette College’s Williams Center for the Arts in Easton, only two jazz artists were onstage. Brad Mehldau on grand piano and Joshua Redman on tenor and soprano sax have been playing together for 20 years. About the only time they had to talk or even look at each other was to decide what song to play next.

Redman and Mehldau were about freedom and melody. They had the freedom of not being constrained by bass and drums, so they could follow their own rhythms. They both have a love of melody, so their excursions were always tuneful, and often beautiful.

Although the music did not sound classical, both men approached the music like classical performers. Redman was precise in his playing. He seldom pushed his instruments to the extremes of their ranges, preferring to get perfect tones out of both.

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