By Ric Bang
Buy CD: Bactrian
This album likely is meant for a limited audience: those who are turned on by the acoustic bass and two of the finest artists who play that instrument, David Friesen and Glen Moore. This is a duet concert by these two masters.
Admittedly, both also are pianists, and half of the selections feature one of them on that instrument, with the other on bass, but the rest are bass duets. The genre is modern classical jazz, and just two of the pieces were composed by familiar names: Juan Tizol’s “Caravan” and George Gershwin’s “Summertime.” The rest are originals by Friesen and Moore.
Friesen, born in 1942, picked up the bass while serving in the Army in Germany. He has worked with many of the greats during his career, including John Handy, Chick Corea, Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie and many more. (On a side note, his sister is actress Dyan Cannon.) Moore, a Portland, Oregon native born in 1941, began his bass instruction after college. He also has played with numerous names, including Jim Pepper and Nancy King. Moore’s association with Friesen has lasted more than 30 years.
The liner notes clarify who plays what on each track, and includes information on the (also famed) instruments, along with the superior electronic equipment utilized to amplify and record them.
As for the performances, well, everything is outstanding. This isn’t music to dance to, or swing with, but it sure makes gorgeous listening.