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Brad Mehldau|Your Mother Should Know: Brad Mehldau Plays The Beatles

Your Mother Should Know: Brad Mehldau Plays The Beatles

Brad Mehldau

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In covering the Beatles, jazz pianist Brad Mehldau chose to focus on the "strangeness" of the band's music. But as he explains in the liner notes, it's also the "universality," present in parallel to strangeness, that makes it so inviting and influential; the combination of the two—which may also be the secret to the band's artistic immortality—is, according to Mehldau, what underpins his approach to this beautifully realized project. Filmed and recorded live in front of an audience at the Philharmonie de Paris, this session benefits from intelligently placed microphones and minimal applause. It was edited by Camille Grateau, mixed by Nicolas Poitrenaud, and mastered in the U.S. by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound. Though cries of "sellout" from jazz purists are sure-to-come, listeners will find many insights into Mehldau's playing and the band's utterly original creative universe. Opening with an unbroken suite of three tunes in their entirety ("I Am The Walrus," "Your Mother Should Know and "I Saw Her Standing There"—the last of which he plays in barrelhouse piano style), it's very clear that Mehldau brought immense thought, passion and especially respect for the band's prismatic genius to this project. He genuinely feels this music, most of which was composed on piano. Sticking relatively close to the familiar melodies, Mehldau embroiders them with a flow of ideas and chordal tangents. His improvisations never venture too far out, however, nor are they ever disconnected from any song's basic emotional underpinning. As is to be expected, some interpretations are more successful than others. "Here, There and Everywhere," played mostly in the piano's highest registers, stretches and crystallizes but abruptly stops, apparently out of discovery. In other cases, Mehldau uncovers rich new veins of inspiration: He makes a high energy mini concerto out of the usually triumphant "Maxwell's Silver Hammer," improvising high notes, adding moody journeys of improvisation, and at times snapping back into choruses where he flashes ornate New Orleans piano professor bravado. Best of all, at least for sentimentalists, is the pianist—who's often accused of a certain detachment and coldness in his playing—lingering over lush Paul McCartney songs like "Golden Slumbers" and "For No One," raising their melodic purity to new heights of poignancy. A rambunctious, joyous success on every level. © Robert Baird/Qobuz

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Your Mother Should Know: Brad Mehldau Plays The Beatles

Brad Mehldau

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1
I Am The Walrus
00:04:14

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

2
Your Mother Should Know
00:02:18

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Nonesuch Records Inc.

3
I Saw Her Standing There
00:03:54

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

4
For No One
00:02:28

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

5
Baby's in Black
00:07:19

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

6
She Said, She Said
00:02:42

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

7
Here, There and Everywhere
00:03:58

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

8
If I Needed Someone
00:02:25

GEORGE HARRISON, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

9
Maxwell's Silver Hammer
00:06:42

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

10
Golden Slumbers
00:08:17

John Lennon, Writer - Paul Mccartney, Writer - Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

11
Life On Mars?
00:04:09

Greg Calbi, MasteringEngineer - Brad Mehldau, Arranger, Piano, MainArtist - David Bowie, Writer - Steve Fallone, MasteringEngineer - Samuel Thiebaut, Producer - Camille Grateau, Editor - Nicolas Poitrenaud, Mixer - Philharmonie de Paris, Sound Engineer

© 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2023 Nonesuch Records Inc.

Album review

In covering the Beatles, jazz pianist Brad Mehldau chose to focus on the "strangeness" of the band's music. But as he explains in the liner notes, it's also the "universality," present in parallel to strangeness, that makes it so inviting and influential; the combination of the two—which may also be the secret to the band's artistic immortality—is, according to Mehldau, what underpins his approach to this beautifully realized project. Filmed and recorded live in front of an audience at the Philharmonie de Paris, this session benefits from intelligently placed microphones and minimal applause. It was edited by Camille Grateau, mixed by Nicolas Poitrenaud, and mastered in the U.S. by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound. Though cries of "sellout" from jazz purists are sure-to-come, listeners will find many insights into Mehldau's playing and the band's utterly original creative universe. Opening with an unbroken suite of three tunes in their entirety ("I Am The Walrus," "Your Mother Should Know and "I Saw Her Standing There"—the last of which he plays in barrelhouse piano style), it's very clear that Mehldau brought immense thought, passion and especially respect for the band's prismatic genius to this project. He genuinely feels this music, most of which was composed on piano. Sticking relatively close to the familiar melodies, Mehldau embroiders them with a flow of ideas and chordal tangents. His improvisations never venture too far out, however, nor are they ever disconnected from any song's basic emotional underpinning. As is to be expected, some interpretations are more successful than others. "Here, There and Everywhere," played mostly in the piano's highest registers, stretches and crystallizes but abruptly stops, apparently out of discovery. In other cases, Mehldau uncovers rich new veins of inspiration: He makes a high energy mini concerto out of the usually triumphant "Maxwell's Silver Hammer," improvising high notes, adding moody journeys of improvisation, and at times snapping back into choruses where he flashes ornate New Orleans piano professor bravado. Best of all, at least for sentimentalists, is the pianist—who's often accused of a certain detachment and coldness in his playing—lingering over lush Paul McCartney songs like "Golden Slumbers" and "For No One," raising their melodic purity to new heights of poignancy. A rambunctious, joyous success on every level. © Robert Baird/Qobuz

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