French national Louiss is well known in Europe as a premier organist. It's unlikely that anyone has attempted what he's done here, save for Fleetwood Mac and the U.S.C. Trojan Marching Band on "Tusk." He combines his trio with a 40 member horn band he calls Fanfare. Perhaps bizarre for those used to the standard organ combo set-up, nonetheless it is a stylistically unique sound and approach.
In the early 90s, after experiencing numerous artistic and commercial success, especially with Jean Michel Jarre and Christopher Francis Dreyfus embarks on the adventure of jazz. To win from the start in this universe in which we did not necessarily expected, Francis Dreyfus sign big names: Steve Grossman, Marcus Miller, Roy Haynes, but also Richard Galliano, Biréli Lagrène, Michel Petrucciani and Eddy Louiss. 20 years later, Dreyfus Jazz has become a prestigious and must label.
To celebrate its 20 years, Dreyfus Jazz publishes luxurious. box of 20 CDs.
The "Jazz in Paris" series is an astounding mine of auditory gems. Each one is wonderful in its own right. These may not be definitive performances, but for someone looking to gain new material, they are a gateway to a lost world. This volume is a pleasant entry. Not too challenging for the beginning listener, but still rewarding for an aficionado. Excellent rendition of "Angel Eyes" makes this feel very Noir. It is Paris after dark after all.
Eddy Louiss has spent most of his career leading his own group in France, but twice has made particularly notable recordings, both on organ. He had sung as a member of the Double Six (1961-1963), played piano with Johnny Griffin in the mid-'60s, and worked at times with Kenny Clarke and Jean-Luc Ponty. But he is best-known for recording Dynasty with Stan Getz (1971) and for his duet set with pianist Michel Petrucciani (1994) on Dreyfus.
French trumpeter, arranger, composer, and conductor Ivan Jullien paired up with organist Eddy Louiss for this expansive 1971 version of George Gershwin's Porgy & Bess. An ambitious combination of small-group jazz, big band, and Gil Evans-style orchestration, Jullien's Porgy & Bess also found him eschewing stylistic traditions with charts that touched upon hard bop, old-school swing, and AM pop, and even made room for bursts of electric fusion. It remains a landmark of French jazz and one of Jullien's most memorable recordings.
Organist Eddy Louiss and pianist Michel Petrucciani perform a set of boppish duets on this intriguing and successful effort. Louiss and Petrucciani (who brought in "I Wrote You a Song" and "Simply Bop") contributed two songs apiece and co-wrote "Jean-Philippe Herbien." In addition, they perform "All the Things You Are," "So What," and "These Foolish Things." The blend between Louiss' organ and Petrucciani's piano is quite attractive, and they work together quite well, leaving enough space for their individual personalities to emerge yet forming a highly appealing ensemble sound.
The two instruments (Piano and Hammon organ) - though unusual, go very well together. The artists play together and make room for each others performances as if they have known each other forever. Louiss' organ creates at smooth and warm athmosphere and Petrucciani plays with a sparkling enthuiasm seldom heard. His energy, drive and variations of the themes makes it impossible not to stamp your foot, nod your head and smile.