身为Venus Records旗下最受欢迎的大将，Eddie Higgins营造浪漫气氛的功力绝对是第一流的，偕同萨克斯风大师 Scott Hamilton 与单簧管大师 Ken Peplowski一起继《It is Magic》专辑后于09年再次联袂打造《Essential Best》。
Scott Hamilton在1973年登上舞台之后，就一直是爵士乐界响叮当当的萨克斯风巨匠，现场表演与录音作品的质量都极为惊人。年轻一辈的Ken Peplowski与他在这张专辑中有很精彩的互飚与即兴。相较於演奏水準早有定评的Scott Hamilton，Ken Peplowski虽然知名度不是那么高，但是演奏实力也不容小视，在这张专辑中还担纲演奏单簧管（又称竖笛）。不同於两支萨克斯风的互相竞争，萨克斯风与竖笛的关系比较像是合作与唱和，配上Eddie Higgins在一旁煽风点火，让这些经典标准曲浪漫到最高点。Eddie Higgins对於慢板歌曲的处理的确有一手，在钢琴轻声演奏的同时还能够顾及音色的圆润及节奏的準确拿捏，而Scott Hamilton的萨克斯就像一杯红酒一样让人沉醉，听来久久不能释怀。
EDDIE HIGGINS - Piano《钢琴》
SCOTT HAMILTON - Tenor Saxophone《次中音萨克斯风》
KEN PEPLOWSKI - Tenor Saxophone Clarinet《次中音萨克斯风、单簧管》
Eddie Higgins Biography:
Born and raised in New England, Eddie (Haydn) Higgins started his professional career in Chicago, while studying at the Northwestern University Music School. For twenty years Eddie worked at some of Chicago's best known jazz clubs, including the Brass Rail, Preview Lounge, Blue Note, Cloister Inn and Jazz Ltd. His longest and most memorable job was at the London House, where he led the house trio for twelve years, playing opposite the biggest jazz stars of the 50's and 60's, including Stan Getz, Oscar Peterson, Dizzy Gillespie, Errol Garner, George Shearing, Cannonball Adderley, Bill Evans and many others.
During his stay in Chicago, Eddie recorded a number of albums under his auspices and many more as a sideman with a wide variety of musicians, ranging in style from Coleman Hawkins to Wayne Shorter, Don Goldie to Freddie Hubbard, Jack Teagarden to Al Grey. Eddie's versatility is well-known: he has backed singers, done studio work as both pianist and arranger and worked in every jazz medium from Dixieland to Modern Jazz.
In 1970, Eddie moved to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and began spending winters in Florida and summers on Cape Cod, where he plays local clubs and enjoys sailing and tennis. Since the early 1980's, Eddie has traveled widely on the jazz festival circuit and has performed frequently in Europe and Japan. His releases on the Japanese “Venus” label have earned him number one in jazz sales on more than one album. In 1988, Eddie and jazz singer/pianist/artist Meredith d'Ambrosio were married and have become a popular team at clubs and festivals, as well as recording for Sunnyside Records.
In recent years, Eddie's recording activity has become even more prolific and attention to his play has grown to be more widely recognized. He has received praise from such as Nat Hentoff and Gary Giddons. Attempts to describe his style are exemplified by the following:
To these tributes, I would add that Eddie's play can be extraordinarily moving. Listen to his treatment of Brazilian themes on “Speaking of Jobim” and solo work on the album “Time On My Hands,” the latter which achieves an almost unparalleled marriage of style, composition and audio fidelity. You would think it was being played in a cathedral.
01. Smoke Gets in Yours Eyes (06:21)
02. You Don't Know What Love is (06:36)
03. My Foolish Heart (05:57)
04. Russian Lullaby (07:59)
05. My Funny Valentine (03:39)
06. Stardust (07:11)
07. It's Magic (07:45)
08. Ghost of a Chance (06:54)
09. In Love in Vain (06:21)
10. A Handful of Stars (08:20)
11. You Turned the Tables on Me (06:02)