Pianist Rein de Graaff has been an important figure on the Dutch jazz scene since the 1960s and has accompanied many star soloists on their visits to Holland.
The idea behind this CD is a simple one: the finest archive recordings featuring nothing but highly personal, story telling soloists and inspired rhythm sections. Recorded between 1984 and 2009, 'Ornithology' documents de Graaff backing saxophonists Teddy Edwards, Harold Land, James Clay, Frank Morgan, Dave Pike, Ronnie Cuber, Herman Schwoonderalt and Benjamin Herman. He doesn't perform much outside of the European continent but 'The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD' felt moved to write "De Graaf is a fine responsive accompanist who will go to his grave with a bent back from having carried so many visiting 'singles' over the years" (!).
(4 stars) Splendid compilation...it's De Graaff - fluent, lucid and swinging like a Doberman's doo-dahs - who steals the show. -- Evening Standard, (Jack Massarik), May 14, 2010
Rein de Graaff is one of the unsung heroes of European jazz. A superb pianist...every track is packed with great moments. -- The Observer, (Dave Gelly), June 6, 2010