RALPH ALESSI & FRED HERSCH
Pianist Fred Hersch is a master of many forms, from solo piano to large ensembles, but he seems particularly to revel in duos. Previous collaborations, with artists such as singer
, have revealed Hersch as the most inventive of musical partners, sensitive and supportive of his counterparts, always serving the music and not his own vanity. Here, with
– one of the leading trumpeters of the New York “downtown” scene – he once again shows his class in an engrossing set that includes improvisations, original compositions, and two well-judged standards – Thelonius Monk’s
San Francisco Holiday
and Paul Motian’s
. Free from both ego and cliché,
is a fascinatingly open exchange between two mature and enlightened musicians.