Jim Beard: Show of Hands

Fri, Nov 1, 2013, 00:00


Show of Hands

Jim Beard

Moosicus Records


Keyboardist and composer Jim Beard is generally too busy answering the calls he gets from people such as Wayne Shorter, John McLaughlin and Steely Dan to ever get around to making records of his own.

A master of many musical forms, but most especially of transferring the complex harmonies of the post-Coltrane universe to electric keyboards, the New Yorker’s first offering in five years is a solo acoustic outing brimming with ideas, as if he just sat down at the piano and let it all flow.

He keeps the tunes short for the most part, including several of what he calls “haiku” that clock in at under a minute, but the album’s highlight is one of its longest, a Monk-ish, darkly magnificent reading of Shorter’s Face on the Barroom Floor. jimbeard.com