Jazz n' Blues Reviews
Anything Goes (Warner Bros. February 24, 2004)
by Brad Mehldau
Reviewed by Don Brown Sr.
The Jazz Internet
Las Vegas Jazz n' Blues
Caught Live Too!
Las Vegas Blues
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Brad Mehldau: Anything Goes

By the time he turned fourteen, Brad Mehldau was a ten year veteran of classical piano lessons. That was a pivotal year for Mehldau, a year in which he discovered Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, The Grateful Dead, Neil Young, and jazz. Fast foward in time and he has recorded a new CD for Warner Brothers Records called Anything Goes. Could this CD live up to its title?

Mehldau and his band take the familiar and rework it with their improvisational skills to make it new again. They take the opening number, "Get Happy," and make it uniquely theirs. The tranquil quality of "Dreamsville" lets you hear the strokes of drummer Jorge Rossy's brushes. The title song, Cole Porter's "Anything Goes," shows you some of Brad's best ivory work.

In "Tres Palabras," the subtle basslines by Larry Grenadier gives Mehldau the room to roam. The trio gets a chance to cut loose on Thelonious Monk's "Skippy." The beautiful "Nearness Of You" slows things down, retaining the song's melody.

The next two songs are by artists I never equated to jazz. Paul Simon's "Still Crazy After All Theses Years" fits in remarkably well in this style. "Everything In Its Right Place" by Radiohead is also a welcomed surprise.

The late silent film star Charlie Chaplin's "Smile" is always a pleasure. "I've Grown Accustomed To Her Face," from My Fair Lady, is a classic showtune and now the jazz number that closes the CD. I guess when it comes to Brad Mehldau, the CD title is right. Anything goes. This amazing journey of sound hits stores in Febuary on Warner Brothers Records.

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