Jazz Review: Pasquale Grasso - Solo Masterpieces

Release Date: March 6, 2020
Label: Sony Music Entertainment

At a crossroads where coffee shop meets professionalism, you are bound to run into Pasquale Grasso’s Solo Masterpieces. This album is the definition of tranquility and peace of mind. This artist goes to show that you don’t always need words to describe how you are feeling or to set a mood right.

The 30-year-old  Italian guitarist unveils an album that is a sure delight to any ear. He practiced under the direction of Agostino Di Giorgio then Barry Harris respectively. Pasquale and his brother quickly became a fixture within Harris’s workshops, soon after, in 2008 he studied at the Conservatory of Bologna under Professor Walter Zanetti. Then, in 2012, Grasso moved to New York City, where he cultivated his talent for Jazz. Rising to a certain level of stardom over the past five years, Pasquale Grasso developed a sound all his own. Pat Metheny, a jazz-guitar icon and NEA Jazz Master stated of Grasso, “This guy is doing something so amazingly musical and so difficult.”

The entirely instrumental album is made up of a collection of Standard-type pieces, each given their own, personal spin. Do you want to find something that brings you comfort? Here it is. Grasso finds ways to bring life to classic, contemporary works that highlight a timeline of musical genius. The simplicity of the album is its greatest asset. As the album progresses, the listener can see hear the intricate details of bringing every song to melodic, dream-sequenced works.

Tracks like “Over the Rainbow,” “Tea for Two,” and “Body and Soul” find a different groove. They stand apart from the rest of the album with an uptick in the tempo. Where the majority of the album streamlines a very mellow, soft undertone; these songs make the album pop with staccato and crescendo flare-ups that will appeal like a new sound to the listener. The opening track, “All the Things You Are” provides the listener with a sample of the ebb and flow of radio-friendly, pop-themed songs through the body of more classically-styled songs.

Grasso is a prime example of how you are never too young to push beyond expectations of your own and those around you. Jumping on a passion and cultivating his talent, Pasquale is a young heart with an old soul. He keeps the old sound of music blending through modern contemporary airwaves. The album represents how a mark in time can last throughout the ages and not everything fades off into the horizon. Rather, some tradition is emboldened with new meaning.

Key Tracks include: “’Round Midnight,” “Epistrophy,” “Body and Soul,” and “Over the Rainbow.”

Gregg Keniston- MuzikMan.net Staff
April 30, 2020

Track Listing:
01. All the Things You Are
02. Over the Rainbow
03. Just One of Those Things
04. ‘Round Midnight
05. Hallucinations
06. Sophisticated Lady
07. Tea for Two
08. Bouncing With Bud
09. These Foolish Things
10. Epistrophy
11. Parker’s Mood
12. Body and Soul

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