Friday, June 16, 2023


I consider this a public service in posting this admittedly grainy YouTube feature of duets by two jazz masters who are beyond compare. It's a concert video of the late jazz guitar master Larry Coryell and the amazing Polish jazz-fusion violinist, originally released on VHS I believe that hasn't been released as a stand-alone disc. I pray someone will secure the rights and make it available. Coryell was a member of the original Super Guitar Trio with John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia, and though his playing was frequently brilliant, he was often hobbled with flubs and miscues; it became obvious that LC's dependence on drugs and hooch lessened his skills, and he was replaced by the ever able Al diMeola. Coryell got clean and sober in 1981 and this effort, recorded in 1982, shows the difference. It's a remarkable performance, thanks in major portions to Urbaniak, whose skills as an improviser are second to none; his unhitched combining of styles ranging from Grapelli through Ponty and his mastery of idiom, technique and tonal nuance gives LC the colorful contrast. Urbaniak's improvisations are swift and melodic and, as with Coryell, seem without end in the configurations his long lines of notes form. Urbaniak as well, demonstrates he has a bass player's instincts and backs Coryell's ultra-virtuoso fantasias. Coryell at this time seems like a man with something to prove. Here the guitarist amply proves his point.

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