Sir Roland Hanna (1932 - 2003) was one of the finest jazz pianists to ever grace a bandstand. His legacy of compositions, recordings, and students is a testament to his significant contribution to the jazz world. So many of the community who knew him speak so highly of him. But, it is the spirit of the man in his music that, for me, confirms his royalty.
Colors From A Giant's Kit is a release of the late pianists recordings of a variety of compositions of his own and others. Hanna treats the listener to an array of tunes in which his deep sense of rhythm and melody are portrayed in a variety of medium. Hanna's own compositions are rich and luxurious with engaging solos. His arrangements of other's compositions include a powerful rendition of Coltrane's "Moment's Notice" and a moving treatment of Strayhorn's "Lush Life". Colors From A Giant's Kit offers a variety of styles; ballad, blues, rag, and straight ahead jazz numbers.
This CD is a joy to listen to. Mostly for Hanna's brilliant work, but also for the track selection itself. The cuts roll off each other and the overall theme is 'total listen-ability'. It is too late to think of what else Sir Roland Hanna might have left us, but it is not too late to engulf yourself in the work the man has already put forth. IPO released this CD to share the great work of Hanna. You should take advantage of this, the man has gone, but his legacy, his music, his style is with us and this latest release is evidence that there is so much more for the listener to discovery in the work of Sir Roland Hanna.