Concerts is a live solo album by American pianist Keith Jarrett recorded in concert on May 28, 1981 at the Festspielhaus in Bregenz, Austria and on June 2, 1981 at the Herkulessaal in Munich, West Germany and originally released as a 3-LP set on the ECM label. It was also released as a single LP including only the Bregenz performance.
Initially the CD pressings included only the Bregenz performance; it was not until 2013 that ECM put out a full three-disc reissue containing both concerts on CD for the first time.
The opening of the Bregenz performance was included in the soundtrack of the film Mostly Martha. (by wikipedia)
By the early ’80s, Keith Jarrett was definitely under siege, accused of arrogance, singing along too loudly, rambling eclecticism, and other “heinous” jazz crimes, especially in the wake of the massive success of the Köln Concert seven years before, and the issue of the massive, unprecedented Sun Bear Concerts box set in 1978. Indeed, around this time, Jarrett would verbally attack music critics at his solo concerts, and the reflected paranoia is obvious in Peter Ruedi’s defensive booklet essay included here, “The Magician and the Jugglers.”
This multi-disc set was recorded during two concerts over four days in the spring of 1981 in Bregenz, Austria, and Munich, Germany. This recording is not to be confused with the earlier, more consistently inspired Solo Concerts: Bremen/Lusanne from 1973, which made Jarrett a star, yet the pianist was far from tapped out in these performances. He is often in his best lyrically funky form, where he makes the most out of a single ostinato idea — particularly at the beginning of the Bregenz concert and in the middle of the Munich concert — and his touch and exploitation of the dynamics and timbres of a grand piano are always a pleasure to hear.
Even the passages of stasis or seemingly aimless rippling do not cancel out the treasurable moments and have real worth — though for some, the string plucking near the end of the Munich show may be somewhat gratuitous. In any case, this is far more interesting and elevated music-making than that of the New Age navel-gazing imitators who were cropping up in Jarrett’s wake in the early ’80s en masse, and adds immeasurably to the historically unique portrait of the artist. (by Richard S. Ginell)
Recorded in concert in Bregenz, Austria on May 28, 1981 (tracks 1-4) and
Munich, West Germany on June 2, 1981 (tracks 5-10)
Keith Jarrett (piano)
CD 1: Bregenz:
01. Festspielhaus Part I / 22.00
02. Festspielhaus Part II / 12.07
03. Untitled 9.30
04. Heartland 6.02
CD 2: München I:
05. Herkulesaal Part I 23.23
06. Herkulesaal Part II 24.23
CD 3: München II:
07. Herkulesaal Part III 26.30
08. Herkulesaal Part IV – 11.45
09. Mon Coeur Est Rouge 8.30
10. Heartland 6.11
All compositions by Keith Jarrett