- Audio CD (4 April 2001)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Telarc Classical
- ASIN: B00000IFTK
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette
- Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1 customer review)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,426 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Jim Hall and Pat Metheny
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The presence of Pat Metheny on Jim Hall's 1998 By Arrangement fulfilled the younger guitarist's long-standing dream of recording with Hall. But these duets confirm how beautiful their performing together could become. Unlike many encounters between high-profile guitarists, these recordings, from both a New York studio and a Pittsburgh concert, show no sense of competition or interest in displays of empty virtuosity. Instead, the CD's true to the enduring spirit of Hall's music, emphasizing interaction and a subtle complexity. Hall plays the lightly amplified electric guitar that is his trademark, with a gorgeous liquid tone, while Metheny brings a bevy of instruments to the meeting, including a standard electric (no synth), several acoustics--including a fretless classical--and his 42-string model for some remarkably harp-like effects. There's tremendous variety in the music and thought in the choices of tunes and approaches. "The Birds and the Bees", played in memory of its composer, the late guitarist Attila Zoller, has a haunting depth, while the frequently played "Summertime" achieves a new identity in Metheny's arrangement, with spare and vibrant lead contrasting with animated rhythm guitar. Both musicians are adept composers, and highlights include Metheny's "Ballad X" and Hall's increasingly propulsive "Cold Spring". Given that Hall participated in one of the first recorded examples of free improvisation, "Free Form" with the Chico Hamilton Quintet in 1955, and Metheny has recorded with the British avant-gardist Derek Bailey, it's fitting that the two guitarists test the limits of their empathy in five brief and intriguing collective improvisations that sometimes explore unusual textures and microtonal harmonies. Whatever the material, though, the earmarks of the set are a quiet energy and a sustained lyric invention that invite and reward repeated listenings. The recording quality is superb, capturing every nuance of this music that seems to live near the core of the jazz guitar ethos. --Stuart Broomer
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His unique, warm tone, and fluency - like running water but in impeccable form and distinction, in his playing, are things that make him one of the world's most amazing guitar players, in my book. Adding to this his enormous versatility in music, the reason he's my, and many others', greatest musical influence becomes quite clear.
Who I didn't know of until I saw this CD, was Jim Hall, oddly enough. Later on, I found out through reading a lot of Pat Metheny biographies and interviews, that Jim Hall has been one of Metheny's greatest musical influences.
Then it all became very clear to me.
Hall's warm, rich tone, and way of playing, is unmistakably reflected in Metheny's, but it's not a copy at all, and that's what makes great artists; learning from the master, but creating your own, and becoming a master yourself, in your own way.
In the store, I wanted to listen a little to this CD before buying it, only knowing who Pat Metheny was. After 20 seconds (literally), I took of the headphones and put my money on the desk. It was magic.
The way these two masters together interpret the songs on this cd; their own, others', is amazing. The music has such a strong soul in it, that it's kept this album very high on my list for as long as I've owned it (since it came out).
Hearing this CD is getting a remarkable insight into the fanstastic musical ideas and spirit of these two, amazing guitarists and human beings.
It has given me a whole new view on music, and it really steered me into a totally new understanding of music, being but a kid when I bought it (I was born in 1985).
I strongly recommend you buy it, too. This kind of chemistry doesn't happen very often.
Ok, here it is: if your'e looking for relaxing, calming, interesting music, check into this. It's not what you'd usually expect from Pat Metheny, though: none of his amazing guitar synth solos, and there's not a single drum beat or bass guitar or keyboard to be heard on this whole cd, which is actually one reason why it's so droning: there are no rhythms other than what the guitars play to keep things upbeat, you know? It's cool though, it's nice to listen to, I listen to this when I fall asleep at night, actually. Take a listen.