Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

Obscure piano / keyboard players - recommendations


Chaso DeChaso

Recommended Posts

Since Ive learned of a few new players to check out from reading this forum, I thought Id start a thread of recommendations for lesser-known pianists or keyboardists. These could be either obscure or under-appreciated. I have some of my own below and was hoping others might comment on these and/or add their own!

 

Kun Woo Paik not obscure in Korea or France but hardly known and severely under-rated in America. Just awesome in Ravel-Poulenc-Debussy-Faure but also Rachmaninov-Scriabin-Lizst. Huge virtuosity + total control + amazing subtlety and tenderness.

 

Anthony Molinaro (anthonymolinaro.com) the best Andante Caloroso from Prokofievs 7th Sonata I have ever heard, bar none. Won Naumberg in 97. Lately doing jazz, and duets with harmonica player.

 

Matthew Herskowitz (matthewherskowitz.com) Fine player from Ravel to Brubeck.

 

Borah Bergman greatest hand independence imaginable. Maybe the most advanced abstract improvised music player Ive heard.

 

Alexander Von Schlippenbach deliberate avoidance of groove! Very abstract music.

 

Keith Tippett along with Borah and Alex above, and perhaps Misha Mengleberg, my favorite of the post-Cecil Taylor pianists.

 

Edsel Gomez lately famous for playing with Don Byron. I am currently trying to get his solo CD from mixhouse.

 

Lennie Tristano not obscure but under-rated. Fiendishly technical.

 

George Dalto great effort on the last two tracks of Gato Barbieris album Yesterdays.

 

Carlos McKinney caught him with Elvin just before Elvin died (Im still mourning that one) and Carlos really played his heart out, particularly on Doll of the Bride.

 

Aydin Esen (aydinesen.com) Turkish pianist and keyboardist with a really special voice mainly jazz and fusion.

 

Don Pullen again, not exactly obscure. Great playing on Minguss Changes Vol II and on his own solo album New Beginnings with Tony Williams.

 

Alan Gowen I am such a fan of Dave Stewart from National Health that I never gave Gowen full credit. The astonishingly fluid synth solos on his solo albums and with National Health and Gilgamesh are worth a listen.

 

Jens Johansson some hard rock with impressive chops and metrical irregularities. Plays/played with fellow swede Jonas Hellborg, as well as Holdsworth, the late Shawn Lane, and his own brother, Anders, the monster drummer.

 

Jesse Gibbon a fun Hammond player from a Northeastern US jamb band called Schleigho.

 

More and more keep coming to mind but Ill stop now...

 

Chaso

Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 23
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Great list chaso. You already know I'm into the Cuban scene as mentioned before. I like Keith Tippet, though I wish I had some of the stuff he did with Centipede.

 

I know the Classical and Romantic field is swamped.

 

Check out this baroque pianist: Edmund Battersby.

 

I saw him at Trenton State College back in the 80's.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rob Schwimmer gets my vote. He has played with nearly everyone, is probably best known for his work with the theramin, but is truly a phenomenal, abeit bizzarre pianist.

 

He was on Simon and Garfunkle's recent tour, and performs regulary with Polygraph Lounge, with Paul Simon guitarist, Mark Feldman. These guys are over the top. They play a lot in Greenwich Village, buit occasionally tour. They are the funniest, most talented entertainment I've ever seen. Schwimmer was a monster on piano when he was 8 years old. Today, at 49, I know of no one like him. He's insane.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's interesting that some giants are still not well known by musicians who should know better. A lot of the younger guys do not know who Dick Hyman is. I will have a student in his 20's who never heard of Teddy Wilson or Oscar Peterson ... go figure. I have no idea anymore what common knowledge is.

 

Having said that, Pete Jolly is a very tasty pianist.

No guitarists were harmed during the making of this message.

 

In general, harmonic complexity is inversely proportional to the ratio between chording and non-chording instruments.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just a couple of names coming to mind:

 

Konstantin Sherbakov - A young Russian who plays the Schostakovic Preludes and Fugues wondefully. I much prefer his version to Keith Jarrett's.

 

Steve Hunt - for years, keyboardist with Allan Holdsworth. Need to say more?

 

Jazz pianist Billy Childs, who also had played with Holdsworth, is also a rather underrated figure IMO. A very good composer and fantastic player.

 

About some of the ones Chaso mentioned:

 

Kun Woo Paik is extraordinary!

 

Keith Tippett: What I'd call intensity. Never a dull project. I have a couple of Centipede tapes which are astounding.

 

I was very much into Borah Bergman *and* Von Schlippenbach, but I feel more and more that their music lacks something. I much prefer to listen to Cecil Taylor for that kind of radical improvisation.

 

Lennie Tristano underrated? Come on... he's a myth.

 

Jens Johansson - ummm.... very good, but he makes me yawn after a while... It's not a matter of musicianship, which is obviously very high; it's the genre of music he likes that leaves me a bit cold.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to agree that Dick Hyman has to be one of the most underrated, under-acknowledged pianists in the world. His technical command of the instrument is just mind boggling!

 

Another pianist that falls under this category is Roger Kellaway. Wonderful player!!

 

Kirk

Reality is like the sun - you can block it out for a time but it ain't goin' away...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

From the prog-rock/prog metal world I would add:

 

Nick Magnus-Played in many Steve Hackett albums in the 1970s and 1980s.

 

David Sinclair-extraordinarily talented and tasteful keyboard player for Caravan.

 

Kit Watkins-amazing multikeyboardist who played for Happy the Man.

 

Vitalij Kuprij-incredibly fast lead lines define his prog-metal group Artension.

 

One may argue that the above four are not obscure, but few would argue with my last choice:

 

Kevin Leonard-very talented keyboardist for the American prog-rock band North Star; check out his Automatrix solo album, including the great title track. He's a heck of a nice guy, too; I met him at Nearfest 2000.

 

Ben

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you're not familiar with Randy Weston, get familiar! My #1 favorite jazz pianist. One of the worlds' remaining treasures.

 

Also high on my list, but unfortunately no longer with us, is Bobby Enriquez - the Wildman. I had the pleasure of seeing him live a bunch of times. In the early nineties he was playing regularly at a club called Manila - usually a trio setting, for $5! Unreal. The guy had my jaw on the floor everytime. I couldn't believe that a musician could think that fast, let alone play that fast. "Wild Piano" is a fine album from that period - well worth checking out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

the Dutch keyboard player, Joost van den broek.

still young, but already a really good player. I think we going to here lot of him in the future. He plays with te band Sun Caged, and did a project called Star One.

Rudy

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cezar Corea. Young Peruvian. Technique over the top!! I saw hiw twice, one with a latin-jazz group and the other with the legendary latin band Mercado Negro in Athens. He plays octave-type montunos mixed with jazz tricks - often, he's using octaves for his solos in a breathtaking tempo (Liszt style!) and he's got an unbelievable sence of the groove.
Be grateful for what you've got - a Nord, a laptop and two hands
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ohhh... a second one

Roberto Cipelli. Italian pianist (Marino may know him-BTW Marino i'm sorry about italian national team, this time the nordic guys set it up!!) who plays with fine trumpeter Paolo Fresu. Check out Fresu's cd "Night on the City" and you will hear a fine and smooth pianist. A touch of Chet Baker and an italian finezza.

Regards

Yannis

Be grateful for what you've got - a Nord, a laptop and two hands
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here from France, I can recommend 2 french jazz pianists:

 

- Jean-Michel Pilc: Pilc's playing reveals a roaring fire that all but consumes the cosmopolitan sheen stereotypical of European music....he creates an admirable trialogue with his band mates (bassist Francois Moutin and drummer Ari Hoenig), that represents another stage in the evolution of the interplay brought to piano jazz by Bill Evans.

 

Check the "Welcome Home" CD, with a stunning "So What" version (see http://www.jmpilc.com/).

 

- Baptiste Trotignon: In 2002, the Baptiste Trotignon Trio (with Clovis Nicolas and Tony Rabeson) has received unanimous acclaim in Europe. Baptiste is a key member of Moutin Reunion (with the Moutin brothers and Rick Margitza), and has been a collaborator of many groups on the French Jazz Scene : Alex Tassel Quintet, Claudia Solal Quartet, Jérôme Barde Quartet, Umberto Pagnini Quartet (La Cricca d'Umberto), Eric Le Lann Trio (featuring Riccardo Del Fra), Pierrick Pedron Quartet, Jean Christophe Beney Quartet.

 

You can hear him on the last "Moutin Reunion Quartet" CD release (see http://www.moutin.com).

 

Pierre

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Synth Novice:

Has anyone ever herd of a pianist called hiromi? she is amazing Ive recently bought both of her albums shes just released they're fantastic!

Go to www.hiromimusic.com and watch the realplayer vidio. If you like jazz you will Love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I went to the web site above and checked out audio clips from her two albums, as well as the video. WOW!! This young lady is BAD TO THE BONE!!! She has the virtuosity of Oscar Peterson, the creativity of Chick Corea and the grace of Lyle Mayes. If you haven't done so already, check her out...

 

Kirk

Reality is like the sun - you can block it out for a time but it ain't goin' away...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by yannis D:

Ohhh... a second one

Roberto Cipelli. Italian pianist (Marino may know him-

I only marginally know Roberto's work, but I'm told he's good.

BTW Marino i'm sorry about italian national team, this time the nordic guys set it up!!)

Don't worry, I'm one of the three Italians without a passion for football/soccer... :D BTW I watched the last match and I was bored to death! Those guys should do something more to earn all the money which is thrown on them...

;)

who plays with fine trumpeter Paolo Fresu.

We had Paolo playing on the latest Indaco CD (I've since left the group). A phenomenal musician overall!

Check out Fresu's cd "Night on the City" and you will hear a fine and smooth pianist. A touch of Chet Baker and an italian finezza.

Regards

Yannis

Of the many CDs Fresu has put out, I'm not familiar with this one... I will check it out, thanks!

BTW, I'd like to jump on the occasion and recommend a fellow jazz pianist from Rome, Enrico Pieranunzi. He's simply one of the best (as McCoy Tyner said!). His work with Americans Marc Johnson and Joey Baron is especially striking.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well,

since nobody mentioned them, I would like to name two brazilian pianists. The first one is Gilson Peranzetta; he is a kind of latin Chick Corea and was the one who wrote -among others- "Setembro", made famous especially by Quincy Jones.

The second pianist is Cesar Camargo Mariano: he has really a huge taste for harmonies and improvisation. Unlike Peranzetta, who is mainly an acoustic pianist, Mariano uses in his songs a lot of electronic sounds, especially the Rhodes.

Korg PA3X Pro 76 and Kronos 61, Roland G-70, Integra 7 and BK7-m, Casio PX-5S, Fender Stratocaster with Fralin pickups, Fender Stratocaster with Kinman pickups, 1965 Gibson SG Standard
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...