Oscar Peterson: Come Rain Or Come Shine


Come Rain Or Come Shine


Oscar Peterson (piano)


Oscar Peterson Plays The Harold Arlen Song Book (Verve 314 589 103)

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Oscar Peterson (piano), Herb Ellis (guitar), Ray Brown (bass).

Composed by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer


Recorded: Los Angeles, November 15, 1954


Rating: 95/100 (learn more)

“Thoughtful” and “sensitive” are not adjectives usually used to describe the playing of the late Oscar Peterson, yet the pianist was very well-spoken, and although he could play in just about any mode he wanted, he obviously preferred an exuberant and flashy style. His playing took on an intimate quality when he performed solo, and this performance of “Come Rain Or Come Shine” is solo for much of its duration. Here, Peterson tamps down the Tatum influence and creates a beautiful re-harmonization of the Arlen standard. He rarely leaves the melody, even when Herb Ellis and Ray Brown enter in the second chorus. Indeed, the biggest surprise is when Ellis and Brown suddenly drop out in the 5th bar of the second 8. Peterson finishes the phrase with a flourish and then brings the supporting players back in. The Peterson trio was praised for its members’ wonderful ability to listen to each other, and there’s a wonderful example on this recording: After the guitar and bass return, Ellis improvises a 2-note response at the end of the first phrase. Peterson immediately picks it up and adapts it to fit the chord structure. At the end of the chorus, Peterson returns to solo piano and closes the performance with an extended coda.

Reviewer: Thomas Cunniffe

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