Guitarist John Pizzarelli is the king of sparkling, entertaining jazz and entertaining jazz-meets-pop. Eclectic too, with albums devoted to the music of Ellington, the Beatles, bossa nova and Sinatra, to name a few. So, no surprise, his recommendations cover that range of styles, too.
Best line from his playlist of recommendations:
“Ella Fitzgerald’s Twelve Nights at the Crescendo. Just buy the entire thing and wonder if it gets any better. It doesn't."
Pizzarelli performed at the Montreal International Jazz Festival on July 6 and 7, and the winner of our "Win a trip and tickets to the Montreal International Jazz Festival" contest got to go. We didn't, sigh. But enjoy this gem from Pizzarelli, and then check out his playlist.
1. Jessica Molaskey, "Sitting in Limbo," Sitting in Limbo.
"Larry Goldings on piano and organ. These two together are perfect. I would love to hear a night of these two together. So smart."
2. Toninho Horta, "Saudades de Bahia."
"He has recorded this a few times and it never fails to capture me. A true musical genius."
3. The Beatles, "Golden Slumbers," Abbey Road.
"One of the great moments in rock history."
4. Frank Sinatra, "Street of Dreams," Live at the Sands with Count Basie.
"What it would have been like to be in that audience and sense that excitement of those two men on stage."
5. Oscar Peterson Trio, "How About You," Live from the Stratford Shakespeare festival.
"A seminal moment in small group jazz."
6. Nat King Cole Trio, "Body And Soul."
"As great a performance of this song as there is, Coleman Hawkins notwithstanding."
7. Zoot Sims, "It's Alright With Me," If I'm Lucky
"Jimmy Rowles at the piano, George Mraz on bass and Mousey Alexander on drums. Who said all great jazz records were made in the '50s?"
8. James Taylor, "Enough to be on Your Way," Hourglass.
"Great guitar playing, harmonies and lyrics."
9. Ella Fitzgerald, Twelve Nights at the Crescendo.
"Just buy the entire thing and wonder if it gets any better. It doesn't."
Q&A: John Pizzarelli’s Montreal
Esperanza Spalding's 'what inspires me' playlist
Bill Frisell’s ‘what inspires me’ playlist
on Jul 12, 2012