Category: Mehldau, Brad

Brad Mehldau: Dragons & Dreams

bradMehldauIan Patterson at AllAboutJazz recently interviewed pianist Brad Mehldau about his experimental new duo album with drummer Mark Guiliana. Mehldau talks jazz, classic rock, and even being influenced by 70s TV theme songs:

“For sure. For me, “Theme from Mash,” but also “Eight is Enough,” I can still remember, I think the lyric was, ‘There’s a plate of homemade wishes, on the kitchen windowsill, and eight is enough, to fill our lives with joy.’ There’s a certain comfort mixed with melancholy to a lot of those themes—it’s not a cut and dry nostalgia for me.

Click here to read Brad Mehldau: Dragons & Dreams

—Peter Blasevick

Brad Mehldau – The Art of Solo Piano

More from my week of interviews from JazzOnline.com. Today’s post is a cool 2011 talk with piano great Brad Mehldau in which he discusses in depth his approach to solo piano playing. From the interview, Bran talks about balancing his Jazz and Classical influences:

“I draw on a lot of classical music, pop and rock music, music from Brazil, and other stuff. I listen to it for pleasure and enjoyment, and then a lot of it filters out in my playing. With classical music, there’s a written canon there – you can study those scores. There’s a good three centuries of stuff to check out – it’s endless. Ultimately I think of myself as an improvising jazz musician at the end of the day, and one of my talents I guess is assimilating all of that written stuff and making it part of what I do.”

Click here to read Brad Mehldau – The Art of Solo Piano

Brad Mehldau’s Opening, Middle and Endgame

Brad Mehldau is an interesting cat, and interviews with him are rarely just about playing piano, which of course he is. Here is an excerpt from an interesting 2003 talk with him by Mike Brannon at AllAboutJazz:

AAJ: There’s a quote attributed to you, that, “Romanticism implies nostalgia for damaged goods”. How is that so, musically and/or philosophically? Can you explain the reference and it’s meaning to you?

BM: I understand life as marked by certain primary experiences that happen early on that involve pleasure, followed by the pain of being disconnected from that pleasure, and the rest of life spent trying to make sense of that pain. That first moment of disconnection is like a shattering of glass that rings in your consciousness for the rest of your life, informing everything you witness and experience. It’s that shattering that leaves the mark, I think – not the experience of pleasure itself. Nostalgia is trying to beautify that moment when everything shattered and broke – trying to make sense of the pain. Music is heightened nostalgia: music is that lost pleasure in a continuous process of being shattered. It’s like this beautiful thing being held in front of your face that disintegrates if you try to touch it.

Click here to read Brad Mehldau’s Opening, Middle and Endgame

-Peter Blasevick