A flexible and powerful electric bassist, Jeff Berlin was one of the major fusion bassist to emerge during the mid-'70s. His father sang opera and his mother played piano. Berlin had nine years of violin lessons starting from when he was five and was considered a child prodigy, appearing with orchestras in New York City…
"High Standards" is a representation of three players in a recording studio, playing a live concert, for no one but themselves! Bassist Jeff Berlin, pianist/upright bassist Richard Drexler, and drummer Danny Gottlieb's long collaboration, have allowed them to create telepathic interplay, in an improvised setting. This is a piano trio at its best…led by one of the greatest electric bass players of our time.
To most listeners, Jeff Berlin is utterly unknown as a musician and composer; to progressive rock enthusiasts, however, Berlin is a god, ranked alongside Jaco Pastorious and Victor Wooten as one of the most exciting virtuoso bassists ever. Crossroads compiles his first two albums, Pump It! and Champion, into a single-disc "greatest hits" of sorts, although neither album had much impact beyond jazz-rock circles.
Vox Humana is the second solo album by Geoffrey Downes, the former member of The Buggles, Asia & Yes. Many of the songs on this fine album were later reworked by Asia on their Archiva albums. Unlike the Jimco release, the recent Voiceprint re-release has added vocals on "Video Killed the Radio Star" by Glenn Hughes…
I must admit that before I began this survey, I had never listened to this piece. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was anticipating that it would be recognizably Petterssonian from the outset, perhaps strident string writing reminiscent of the string orchestra concertos, accompanying a choir (which is struggling to be heard above the tumult). The first time I heard the opening two movements I double-checked to make sure that I was actually listening to Pettersson and not Rosenberg, the other composer on this disc. Although in some of the later movements it is clear that we are listening to Pettersson……allanpettersson100.blogspot
Indeed, bassist and educator Jeff Berlin is a modern era pioneer amid accolades that have piled high, spanning several decades via his astounding technique and contributions to progressive-rock, jazz fusion and modern mainstream jazz. Following up his jazz trio outing High Standards (2010, M.A.J. Records) also featuring bassist, pianist Richard Drexler, the core differentiator on Low Standards is that renowned drummer Mike Clark takes over the drum chair from Danny Gottlieb. Yet Berlin's game-plan is similar as Drexler uses the bass for a support role while toggling between piano duties. Nonetheless, the star of the show and lead soloist is Berlin, performing exclusively on electric bass.
HBC is the new fusion supergroup comprised of three virtuoso musicians, guitarist Scott Henderson, bassist Jeff Berlin and drummer Dennis Chambers who join together to create one of the most phenomenal trios in the history of jazz fusion. Rather than jumping into a studio as virtual strangers and winging it like some superstar alliances, instead HBC hit the road first and refined a repertoire of classic fusion covers in front of thousands of hungry fusion fans.