Keith Jarrett: (If The) Misfits (Wear It)


(If The) Misfits (Wear It)


Keith Jarrett (piano, soprano sax)


Fort Yawuh (Impulse 9240)

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Keith Jarrett (piano, soprano sax), Dewey Redman (tenor sax), Charlie Haden (bass), Paul Motian (drums).

Composed by Keith Jarrett


Recorded: Village Vanguard, New York, February 24, 1973


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

Here is a glimpse of Keith Jarrett the avant-garde experimentalist, the combo leader who built a band around former Ornette Coleman sidemen, the artist who constantly staked out new territory with every LP. No standards here, I'm afraid. Jarrett was a different cat completely back during the Nixon administration. He plays with ferocious pianism in the opening moments of this track. Instead of the typical comping chords and jazzy right-hand phrases that most keyboardists bring to work every day, Jarrett dishes out flurries of notes, a biting sandstorm of sound. Then midway through the performance, he stops playing the piano completely, and we might as well be back in Ornette's band. "Chord changes? We don't need no stinkin' chord changes!" Later, when Jarrett starts playing soprano, matching up with Redman in the front line, who can be surprised? Fans of this band were so used to the unexpected that nothing could shake them by this point. But those who only know Jarrett from "Over the Rainbow" and "My Funny Valentine" might be shaken and stirred by this early vintage performance.

Reviewer: Ted Gioia

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