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E.E.R.




Willie Myette Trio, This is Jazz (51:43); WM3001, 1998
JazzKids Records
20 Longbow Drive
West Warwick, RI 02893
Phone: 800-582-4092
E-mail: wm3@jazzkids.com
Cyberhome: www.jazzkids.com


      This is the promising debut of Willie Myette, a straightahead player 
based in Providence, Rhode Island. The Berklee- and Fred 
Hersch-trained pianist offers up seven standards, as well as Oscar 
Peterson's "Hymn to Freedom" and an original waltz titled "Ella's 
Song" - dedicated not to the first lady of song, but to Myette's 
daughter. Joining Myette is the solid rhythm team of bassist Mark 
Carlsen and drummer Jack Menna, both of whom are at their best on an 
uptempo version of "The Night We Called it a Day."
	It's clear by the end of the first track, "If I Should Lose 
You," that Myette has a way with slick, tightly arranged endings. His 
5/4 treatment of "Be My Love" contains the disc's most subtle and 
alluring moments. However, I would have counseled him against 
including "Hymn to Freedom," sung by the JazzKids children's choir 
under his wife's direction. Myette founded JazzKids, a jazz 
educational program for children, and his pride in the group is 
touching. But an objective listener would have to conclude that the 
singing isn't CD-worthy and ends the program on a distracting note.
	On the technical level, Myette's single-note lines can be a 
little stiff at times. He's harmonically adept but not particularly 
adventurous, which can be a liability when playing standard 
repertoire. The "bag" Myette has chosen puts him in the company of 
young players like Brad Mehldau, David Kikoski, and Jacky Terrasson, 
all of whom have worked wonders with the Great American Songbook. 
Myette will need to find ways to stand out among a very daunting 
crowd. But his debut shows that he has the potential to do so.
~David R. Adler, 12/8/99

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