Don Friedman Salzau Trio & Gerour Gunnarsdottir String Quartet - THE COMPOSER
CD 9187-2

Don Friedman Salzau Trio & Gerour Gunnarsdottir String Quartet

Don Friedman - piano
Martin Wind - bass
Joe LaBarbera - drums
Gerour Gunnarsdottier - violin
Elfa Run Kristinsdottir - violin
Martin Stupka - viola
Stephan Braun - violoncello

Special Guest:
Gary Smulyan - baritonsax


1. 35 West 4th Street  2. Waltz for Marilyn  3. Friday Morning  4. Almost Everything  
5. Summer's End  6. Red Sky Waltz  7. Memory of Scotty  8. Delayed Gratification

Don Friedman studied jazz at Los Angeles City College during the mid 1950s. At that time L.A. was the capital of West Coast Jazz and Don was becoming part of it as he worked around town with groups that included Shorty Rogers, Chet Baker, Ornette Coleman, and Scott LaFaro.

At the same time, he displayed his hard bop credentials by gigging with Dexter Gordon. In 1956 Buddy DeFranco hired him for a tour that included gigs at New York’s Birdland and Basin Street. The DeFranco tour was a turning point, and the experience convinced Don in 1958 to leave California for New York. He thrived in Manhattan’s great and diverse jazz scene of that time. He played with most of the major players and his reputation began to build as a pianist who was going places.

At about the same time, the legendary bass player Scott LaFaro also moved to New York. The two had become close in Los Angeles and now formed a legendary partnership as roommates, friends and fellow jazz pioneers. During this period in New York City Don played in many settings, including his own trio and with artists such as Pepper Adams, Booker Little, Jimmy Giuffre, Charles Lloyd, Elvin Jones and Herbie Mann.

He initially recorded as a leader for producer Orrin Keepnews at Riverside records from 1961 through 1964. His first three LPs were with his trio. German guitarist Attila Zoller, a close friend, was featured on the fourth. Late in the 1960s Don began his association with Clark Terry, working in his big band. (He still anchors Terry’s hard-working quintet.) He also began teaching at New York University as well as leading its jazz ensemble.

Since then Don has continued to be in demand in New York City as a jazz pianist and educator, while regularly touring the United States, Europe and Japan with top-flight groups. His lyrical style, technical virtuosity and mastery of solo performance continue to draw critical acclaim and respect from his peers.

Friedman is at home playing classic jazz with the likes of Buddy DeFranco and Clark Terry, or avant-garde jazz with the youngest Turks. Collectors snap up his recordings in America, Europe and especially Japan, where he has a remarkably large and loyal fan base.

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