A look at the music of Michel Petrucciani

This recording focuses on the original compositions of pianist and composer Michel Petrucciani. Christian Jacob's wonderful arrangements and new take on these compositions is a reminder of why there is always a need to expand our musical boundaries beyond the jazz standards we are already familiar with.

Reached #9 in National JazzWeek Chart
#24 in Billboard Jazz Chart

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Jazz Times
"I was a devoted fan of Michel Petrucciani, so it is surprising that it took Christian Jacob’s new album to reveal the permanence of Petrucciani’s work as a composer. Christian Jacob is such a fluent, polished pianist—and his long-term working trio with bassist Trey Henry and drummer Ray Brinker is so tight—that he is able to reveal the luminous melodic essences inside Petrucciani’s complex irregular forms.

Once you have heard Jacob’s elegantly detailed and finished renderings of Petrucciani lines like “Looking Up” and “Even Mice Dance” and “13th” and “Memories of Paris,” it becomes remarkable that these songs have remained largely unexplored by jazz players. Jacob presents them as such meticulous and complete designs, and such rich sources for improvisation, that he newly claims their place in jazz literature.

When Petrucciani died at 36 in 1999, the French critic Francis Marmande wrote, “If the death of a musicians touches us in a special way, it is because they take their secrets with them.” With Contradictions, Christian Jacob has performed the valuable service of revealing that Michel Petrucciani left some of his secrets behind. " ~ Thomas Conrad

All About Jazz
As readers should know by now, I have deep admiration for pianist Christian Jacob, whose praises I have sung whenever the opportunity arose. He is, simply put, one of the finest jazz pianists on the scene, and those who’ve not heard him play have missed a thoroughly pleasurable experience. On Contradictions, Jacob salutes another marvelous pianist, Michel Petrucciani, whose life was ended far too soon by the effects of osteogenesis imperfecta, a rare bone disease that stunted his physical growth but couldn’t arrest his artistic genius.

Perhaps because Petrucciani’s brilliance at the keyboard was so conspicuous, his remarkable talents as a writer have been somewhat overlooked, an omission that fellow countryman Jacob has sought to redress by selecting and arranging eleven of Petrucciani’s superlative compositions and lending each one his own special interpretation.

Jacob plays them with consummate ardor, subtlety and awareness, all the while superbly accompanied by bassist Trey Henry and drummer Ray Brinker, with whom he has worked for more than a decade and who together comprise “the Tierney Sutton Quartet minus one.” The overall feeling is one of remarkable compatibility and responsiveness; these three musicians listen closely to one another and use that as a framework on which to create and enhance their beguiling themes. ~ Jack Bowers

All Music Guild
The Christian Jacob Trio plays a well-conceived and brilliantly executed -- and long overdue by the jazz community -- to the tunes of the late composer and pianist Michel Petrucciani. Jacob is accompanied by bassist Trey Henry and drummer Ray Brinker on this very spirited and swinging program that compiles 11 Petrucciani tunes including the challenging "Brazilian Suite," and its sequel "Brazilian Suite, No. 2," "Memories of Paris," the playful "Even Mice Dance," and the furiously tempoed "My Bebop Tune." Highly recommended. ~ Thom Jurek
Brilliant! That is the first thing that came to my mind after listening through this CD the first time. I'll grant you, the material, compositions of Michel Petrucciani, is brilliant to begin with. Jacob's arrangements, interpretations and executions are equally brilliant.

In this recording of Contradictions: A Look at the music of Michel Petrucciani, The Christian Jacob Trio brought back the spirit of Petrucciani, and took it to another level. It was as if Michel had channeled himself through the gifts of Christian and was able to "live" again. This being said, I must confess that the interpretation of the music was pure Christian Jacob. Respect was paid to all the important elements of the compositions, and yet the signature was Jacob. It is a wonderful piece of work. I am a convert, a newly proclaimed fan of Christian Jacob. I have been aware of his work, but not familiar with his talent.

The Christian Jacob Trio is an extremely talented group. They are consumate musicians who pull off this project brilliantly. There is that word again! But I must say it is the case in this recording. I listen to this disc and I hear the master himself, nuances of that Petrucciani sound, the technique, the timing, all of it. The band ties it all together for you.

The Christian Jacob Trio is a tight group, they execute well together. They pay homage to the late Petrucciani by delivering a sound interpretation, then taking it to another level. A real joy to listen to, this disc is highly recommended for Petrucciani fans, and all jazz fans alike.