John Pizzarelli

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 July, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 24 July, 2005, 12:00am

John Pizzarelli

Knowing You


The core personnel on this album - John Pizzarelli, his regular accompanists brother Martin on bass, Ray Kennedy on piano and new boy drummer Tony Tedesco - appear at City Hall on Wednesday, and, although they have a few special guests here helping them out, this album should give us a fair idea of what to expect.

A fine jazz guitarist in the swing tradition, Pizzarelli has been promoted more with each successive album as a vocalist, and although there's plenty of fine guitar work here, it plays a supporting role to his singing.

Although his voice is lightly charming rather than notably powerful, there's little room for complaint. This is elegant and intelligent vocal jazz rather than background music, and he puts his often humorous stamp on every song.

The repertoire is drawn from well-known standards, his own compositions and songs of quality such as Coffee, Black.

Pizzarelli also likes to remind his audience that he's from a rock'n'roll generation, and this reminder comes in the form of an unlikely cover of the Beach Boys' God Only Knows. We also get a tip of the hat to Frank Sinatra in The Shadow of Your Smile.

Some guest artists make useful contributions, most notably Pizzarelli's wife, Jessica Molaskey and organist Larry Goldings. A useful addition to any vocal jazz collection, and an appetising taster for Wednesday's gig.