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Oscar Peterson Quartet

- Jazz and Cabaret Performance Reviews

Oscar Peterson Quartet
(Oscar Peterson Website)
At Birdland
315 West 44th Street, NYC
Gianni Valenti, Owner
Andy Kaufman, Business Manager
Tarik Osman, Manager
See Other Birdland Reviews 1

Oscar Peterson on Piano
Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen on Bass
Alvin Queen on Drums
Ulf Wakenius on Guitar

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
June 17, 2004

(See June 14, 2004 Peterson Review)
In this second set, revisiting Oscar Peterson, a more progressive style of jazz was apparent. The rhythm was more improvisational than on opening night, more abstract. The first piece featured Pedersen’s soulful bass, with Wakenius’ versatile guitar improvising on the same theme. Queen’s percussive riff, followed by Peterson, became a drum-piano conversation with a foxtrot beat. A bluesy ending resulted with soft keyboard and drums in synchronized synergy.

Requiem, composed by Peterson, was dedicated to the jazz musicians who have passed on. Peterson’s keyboard introduction was melancholy and moody. My guest tonight, Dr. Henri Delbeau, a competitive, classical pianist, said, “Mr. Peterson provided a poignantly delicate accompaniment to the plaintive bass and guitar solos. In his solo playing, he elegantly created the rocking inner voices, accompanying the melody. The somber mood was magical.” The next piece, a slow swing, was much more improvisational and spirited, before Pedersen took a melancholy and meandering turn.

Another Oscar Peterson arrangement, of Summertime, showcased Pedersen on bass in a long, languorous riff. Let’s Fall in Love, with piano and bass interchange, created contrasting themes that merged into new songs. Peterson flew up and down he octaves with abandon and engaged his audience in confident stride. This final piece ended in a virtual Boogie Woogie. The Oscar Peterson Quartet should be personally experienced next time they appear at Birdland. Meanwhile, check Birdland’s Website for the current calendar and schedules.

Dermot Quigley of Fitzpatrick Hotels and Julie

James at the Bar

Ulf Wakenius, Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, Vitali Imereli, Henri Delbeau

Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, Vitali Imereli, Roberta, Henri Delbeau

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at