June 12, 2024

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CD review: Dado Moroni Trio – More of Les Live at Mocher’s – 2023: Video, CD cover

Italian pianist, composer Dado Moroni is internationally respected for his driving piano style and improvisational skills.

Some of the best piano players in jazz today come from Italy, like Stefano Bollani, Enrico Pieranunzi, Danilo Rea and Stefano Battaglia. Dado Moroni belongs on the list, although he is atypical. He is self-taught, not conservatory trained. His version of Italian jazz romanticism is percussive, rhythmically relentless and blues-based.

Now, in his More of Les Live at Mocher’s, he comes up with complex trio arrangements, always swinging and intellectually stimulating.

Moroni was born in 1962 and raised in Genoa, Italy, taking to music early, playing the family piano at three. Later, he studied formally and started playing gigs with local Italian musicians Becoming discouraged, he decided to study law. At that time, however, he played with Dizzy Gillespie, who was on tour, and the legendary trumpeter encouraged him, saying, “Man, there are too many lawyers out there. You should play piano!” That was the turning point for the young man. Today his music takes him around the world.

During his 35-year career, Moroni has played with many greats. In this session, he acknowledges three of his influences—Ron Carter, Oscar Peterson and Ahmad Jamal—with inestimable help by bassist Mario Panascia and drummer Peter Erskine.

The selections are a balance of Moroni originals and an eclectic range of standards and jazz tunes, as the pianist takes numbers from classic jazz recordings and ingeniously pays tribute to them, while putting his own stamp on them.

The CD package includes an extremely well-filmed bonus DVD. Live, the artists – dressed in black – stand out in the artful lighting scheme, as does the bronze burnish of the bass and metallic luster of the drums.

1. The Shampoo
2. Maichen
3. Charma
4. Them That Got
5. Work Song
6. That Healing Feeling
7. A Little 3/4 For God & Co.
8. Gone On and Get That Church

Dado Moroni – piano
Alberto Marsico – organ
Alessandro Minetto – drums

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