ECM 2643 is Common Practice, the Ethan Iverson Quartet featuring Tom Harrell, Ben Street and Eric McPherson.
The latest ECM album to feature pianist Ethan Iverson – following last year’s duo recording with saxophonist Mark Turner, Temporary Kings, and two lauded discs with the Billy Hart Quartet – presents the Brooklyn-based artist at the head of his own quartet in a program of standards and blues, recorded live at Manhattan’s famed Village Vanguard. Iverson’s quartet for Common Practice features as its prime melodic voice the veteran Tom Harrell, who was voted Trumpeter of the Year in 2018 by the U.S. Jazz Journalists Association. Iverson extols the quality of poetic “vulnerability” in Harrell’s playing, particularly in such ballads as “The Man I Love” and “Polka Dots and Moonbeams,” two of the album’s highlights. Common Practice also courses with an effervescent swing, thanks to the top-flight rhythm team of bassist Ben Street and drummer Eric McPherson, whose subtle invention helps drive Denzil Best’s bebop groover “Wee” and two irresistibly bluesy Iverson originals.
Produced by Manfred Eicher — Liner notes by Kevin Sun — Recording Engineers: Andreas K. Meyer, Geoff Countryman and Tyler McDiarmid.
Special thanks to Anthony Creamer.
Thanks also to Angela Harrell, Jed Eisenman, and Deborah Gordon. The disc is dedicated with sincere love and respect to the late, indomitable, wonderful, sorely-missed Lorraine Gordon, who caught an early set of this group and approved of the sounds.
Photo of Sun’s liner notes:
Extensive review by Jonathan Wertheim, linking the disc to DTM (he’s not wrong LOL)
(Related DTM: Interview with Tom Harrell.)
Two ECM records in two years! I’m very proud of both, not the least because I am the accompaniment for Mark Turner and Tom Harrell, musicians who I wish to emulate more and more.