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Charlie Haden & piano players


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Just downloaded the new duo record with Haden and Brad Mehldau. I have several more duo records with Haden accompanying Keith Jarrett, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Kenny Barron, and Hank Jones. Haden reminds me of Bob Moore, famous country bassist who played big ole notes.


Curious to know from other fans or listeners of Haden about opinions on what made him such a good choice as a duo partner.

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I think you nailed it with "big ole notes." He doesn't overplay, stays out of the way, listens well, picks good notes, and keeps impeccable time.


(Not to say that this is the only way to effectively play bass with a piano player. Bill Evans always performed with virtuosic bass players who played a lot of notes. If you've got the technical facility of Scott LaFaro, Eddie Gomez, or Marc Johnson, that works well too).

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I think the late Haden had big ears and an impeccable sense of melody. He also knew how to stay away from pianists left hand (like we all do regarding guitarists and vocalists :) ). It's not a fruit of chance that he had such a carrier

BTW, one of his advantages is that he knew how to pick pianists and record with - Gonzalo Rubalcaba was almost unknown outside Cuba when they played together in Canada (i think)

Be grateful for what you've got - a Nord, a laptop and two hands
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We hosted Rubalcaba here at my company a few years ago, and I had the pleasure of talking with him at great link. I think he and Haden really formed a bond over their social justice values, for one thing. Haden is far and away my favourite upright bass player, but I'm not sure that has rubbed off much on my own playing.

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