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4.6 out of 5 stars15
4.6 out of 5 stars
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This album was compiled from a live jazz club recording in 1958 at The Pershing Lounge, and originally released on vinyl by Chess Records.

The masterful Jamal trio, with Israel Crosby on bass and Vernel Fournier on drums, get into a good groove in front of an appreciative audience. The music has a lightness of feel (some of Jamal's critics have claimed he played "cocktail bar music") but at the same time rewards the listener who pays attention. Jamal is a truly great jazzman, not least because you don't need to be a jazz-obsessive to `get' his music: just sit back and enjoy.

Jamal's accessible, easy-to-listen-to piano style belies his musical virtuosity. Greatly admired by Miles Davis and by almost all top-line jazz musicians of the day, Jamal's playing has endured and is still entertaining, relaxing and - yes - even humorous.

At least two different editions of this album are available: the original with only 30-minute running time (but every minute a gem), and an expanded version titled `Complete live at The Pershing Lounge' with added tracks and extended running time. Whichever variant you have in your collection, it is likely to be played often.

If you get to like this, give the album titled `Ahmed's Blues' a listen. It's another live jazz club recording from the period and (if this is possible) it's even better.
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on 1 July 2008
"At the Pershing: But Not for Me" is considered a jazz classic. The Ahmad Jamal trio played on it and featured Jamal on piano, Israel Crosby on bass, and Vernel Fournier on drums.

Keith Jarrett, Jack DeJohnette, and Gary Peacock all cite Jamal as a major influence in use of rhythm and space as well as his innovative use of multi-tonal melodic lines. The element of surprise is an important part of Jamal's improvisations to them all.

Jamal's style has changed steadily over time - from the lighter, breezy style heard on his 1950s sides to the Caribbean stylings of the 1970s and onto the large open voicings and bravura-laden playing of the nineties.

Jamal has always been distinctive however for his use of space, his dramatic crescendos, and for a very staccato orientation with chords.

Clint Eastwood featured two recordings from Jamal's album But Not For Me -- "Music, Music, Music" and "Poinciana" -- in the 1995 movie The Bridges of Madison County.

The French government has inducted Ahmad Jamal into the prestigious Order of the Arts and Letters by French Culture Minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres , naming him Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres on June 2007.

So..... What are you waiting for?????????
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on 5 December 2012
Replacement copy..worn out by friends borrowing it.
A comfortable overcoat for these cooler days & nights.
At the Blackhawk perhaps due for replacement next....
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on 13 December 2013
As a life-long jazz lover, I had not listened to Ahmad Jamal's recordings until I bought the above CD.I can only say - my loss 'til now !
Miles rated him very highly and I can see why; - beautiful phrasing and dynamics. Must buy more Ahmad.
Right up there with Bill Evans. Highly recommended.
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on 16 November 2013
My type of Jazz, just play it and let the pleasure run over you, Ahmad Jamal never makes a less than 5-star record, this rates with the rest. This is an excellent way to relax. At times memories of George Shearing comes to mind and their is no greater comparison.
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on 11 May 2013
old school, piano playing is great, I actually brought this because I read that Jamie Cullum was inspired by this Ahmad Jamal and I can see why after listening to this album. (not saying you have to be a Cullum fan) ..its just how i heard about him.
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on 23 April 2013
With great DVD great value. I first heard Ahmad Jamal in late '50s. At over 80 now he's unbelievable. CD and DVD wonderful.
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on 26 September 2013
It takes me right back to my mid-twenties when I heard this kind of music in Canada. Superb artiste !
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on 25 February 2015
Music great but recording poor! Have found same problem with other earlyJamal CDs. Most seem to have been culled from old records with all the problems that infers.
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on 14 July 2014
The King of melodic jazz on top form. Surrounded by first rate musicians.
Can't compare him to bill Evans or Keith Jarratt, but excellent background music.
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