Last fall, I received the sad news that Pirouet Records, a Munich-based boutique jazz label that has released nearly 100 albums by German and international jazz musicians alike, was, in the words of the press release, “taking a pause.”
Over 13 years, the label owned by the discerning jazz enthusiast Ralph Bürklin put out excellent album by Marc Copland, Kenny Werner, Bill Carrothers, Kevin Hays and German musicians Pablo Held, and Florian Ross, just to name some of the excellent pianists who recorded for the label. As well, jazz players as diverse as Bill Stewart, Tim Hagans, Larry Goldings, Jochen Rueckert and the rising Canadian-raised reeds player and composer Anna Weber put out fine releases on Pirouet. Here’s hoping that Pirouet’s pause is temporary.
I’ve shamefully fallen behind in reviewing the most recent Pirouet Records, despite their obvious musical appeal. Below, I’ll try to make amends, in particular because drummer and composer Rueckert plays music from his excellent Pirouet record of last fall, Charm Offensive, tonight at the Smoke Jazz & Supper Club in New York.
Charm Offensive (Pirouet Records)
Jochen Rueckert Quartet
German-born drummer Jochen Rueckert, who is in his early 40s, has lived and played in Brooklyn for about half his life, and since that time has run with fast jazz company.
A vaunted sideman, Rueckert has played in the groups of pianist Mark Copland and John Abercrombie, as well as with peers such as the saxophonists Seamus Blake, Chris Cheek and Will Vinson, as well as pianist Thomas Rückert, who happens to be his older brother. I’ve always found Rueckert’s playing to be spot-on in his sideman situations, but…
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