Recording Date: Sep 21, 2004-Sep 24, 2004
Guitarist/vocalist John Pizzarelli returns with another solid collection of tastefully swinging standards on Knowing You. Never straying too far from what he does best, Pizzarelli is nonetheless an exciting improviser and pleasing vocalist who always finds a way to make an old chestnut of a tune his own. Here, his rapport with such longtime bandmates as pianist Ray Kennedy, bassist Martin Pizzarelli, and drummer Tony Tedesco is instinctual, full of humor, and filled with call-and-response interplay. To these ends, Pizzarelli has compiled an enjoyable set of well- and lesser-known standards, including the sprightly swinger "Coffee, Black," the elegantly mellow "The Shadow of Your Smile," and the sweetly unexpected Brian Wilson classic "God Only Knows." That interesting song choice and the Rupert Holmes-esque original title track also show Pizzarelli's ability to push his talents into contemporary areas without alienating his fan base. Also joining in are Pizzarelli's wife, vocalist Jessica Molaskey, along with pianist Larry Goldings, tenor saxophonist Harry Allen, and others.
-Matt Collar (All Music Guide)
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Thanks, as always, to everyone at TELARC, Bob and Elaine, Robby "Barolo", Steve Levine, et al, at ICM, Andreiv, Adam, and everyone at MBST, Marty Knecht and Joel Faden at Joel Faden for shingling the house and webmaster Phil Bernardi, for putting the dot in johnpizzarelli.com.
Also, thank you to Bill Moll, luthier to the stars; Dan and Vince at ULTRASOUND amplifiers; Bob Archigian at LABELLA Strings; Joe Barato, Stephanie and Marcie at BRIONI; Irwin Robinson, Don Sebesky for your constant inspiration, Marty Kramer and the Foxwoods Resort and Casino, Mitch and Janine Albom, Jim Czak, Bill Moss and Johnny Post at NOLA Recording; Jay Blake Fichera and Aaron for their EPK work; Russ Titelman; Kevin Ryan, Helene Gresser, Erica Grassi from TEAM MADDIE, GINO, Maria Traversa, Brian Saunders, Jonathan Schwartz, Bob Coffee, Tony and Shirley, Orlando Cabrera and Lenny, Tashi, Dekel, Sammy, Maya, Vikki and John from the neighborhood.
To Timothy White, thanks for making our reunion happen. You bring out the best in me. Thank you for your "one-of-a-kind eye" and unique driving skills.
To all the fans who come to the gigs, contribute to the web site, tell me your favorite songs, bring your parents, bring your kids, and recommend me to your friends and relatives with such passion, you are why I do what I do, my unending thanks.
To the musicians on this CD, Harry Allen, Ken Peplowski, Cesar Camargo Mariano, Tony Monte, Larry Goldings, Ray Kennedy, Tony Tedesco and Martin Pizzarelli, it was a joy to make music with musicians who perform at such a high level day in and day out. Thank you for making this project so fulfilling. And as for my Dad, words cannot express how much you inspire and challenge me musically, and how great a father you have been to me. I love listening to you play, but I love just hanging out with you too. Now go take care of your knees!
Thanks also to my mother who put in yeoman's work this year and who constantly cooks me under the table, as well as Anne and Mary for being so supportive and beautiful.
To Johnny and Maddie, thank you for making me laugh, for eating your vegetables, putting my music on your iPODs, and being a constant source of inspiration and pride. I love you both so much.
And as always, to my Jess, thanks for always believing and for being the pat on my back, the hand in my hand, and the kiss on my lips.
- John Pizzarelli, 2005