Sun. Jan 29th, 2023

The legendary jazz piano virtuoso is the topic of this warmly celebratory if undemanding documentary, which takes us by means of his life and occasions and in addition brings collectively jazz musicians to play a particular session in his honour. Peterson was a musician who performed and composed within the custom of Artwork Tatum, Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington; largely performing together with his personal trio, or later solo, which gave him a quasi-classical mien.

In contrast to these different greats, nevertheless, Peterson was from Canada, and as his good friend Quincy Jones remarked: “I didn’t know they even had black individuals in Canada!” In consequence, Peterson by no means grew up with Jim Crow segregation, of which there was no authorized equal in Canada – though racism and discrimination have been definitely commonplace sufficient, and Peterson’s 1962 plangently emotional composition Hymn to Freedom, written for Martin Luther King Jr, turned an anthem for the civil rights motion.

This documentary makes use of some British TV archive footage from The Michael Parkinson Present, although watching this I couldn’t assist remembering one thing that the movie doesn’t explicitly allude to: within the Seventies, Peterson himself offered exhibits for the BBC: Oscar Peterson Invitations …, by which Peterson hosted different musicians and pianists, and Piano Occasion, by which his visitors included Rick Wakeman and, remarkably, former prime minister Edward Heath (Heath was a scholar of the piano and the clavichord, and gave a stately however completely respectable efficiency). These programmes could also be misplaced within the mists of time, however what number of different BBC programmes again then have been fronted by an individual of color? This can be a documentary that discreetly doesn’t concern itself a lot with Peterson’s character, and concentrates on the music, which is completely worthwhile.

Oscar Peterson: Black + White is launched on 30 January on digital platforms.

By Admin

Leave a Reply