Bill Evans Sunday At The Village Vanguard

sold out

Bill Evans Sunday At The Village Vanguard


Limited to 3,000 copies worldwide!

Bassist Scott LaFaro's death in a Geneva, New York car accident ten days after the Sunday, June 25th, 1961 recording of this Village Vanguard set did more than add a tragic luster to the story. It upended what might have been a very different track order here and on Waltz For Debby, the second record sourced using tracks recorded that day by engineer David Jones on a modified Ampex 350 using Scotch 111 tape.

The trio of Bill Evans, LaFaro and drummer Paul Motian had been together for almost two years when this, the group's fourth Riverside release and Evan's first live record, was documented. LaFaro's playing—unusual for its melodic improvisations at a time when most bassists limited themselves to time-keeping—thrived in the company of Motian and Evans. By the time of these live performances, beginning with a Sunday matinee, the group had achieved an ethereal, almost otherworldly back and forth and give and take that produced "lift off" almost from the first note.

After La Faro's passing, Evans became deeply involved in the record, determined to turn it from a collection of the day's best tracks into one that paid tribute to the bassist. Thus it opens with La Faro's "Gloria's Step" and closes with his "Jade Vision" which was the evening's closer and the final time the trio played together.

In between were the "standards" "My Man is Gone", "All of You" and the buoyant "Alice in Wonderland" plus Miles Davis's "Solar", which wasn't then but today might be considered a "standard".

The sparse applause heard on some tracks was not because those afficienados in attendance weren't impressed, but rather because the matinee audience was probably small.


Add To Cart