Enrico Rava, Happiness is -

Alyn Shipton

By Alyn Shipton

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Happiness is -

Enrico Rava
Italian trumpeter reflects on the joys of winning a big prize.

In 2002, Italian trumpeter Enrico Rava, then aged 62, won the world's richest jazz prize, the Danish Jazzpar award, and this sextet album was recorded to celebrate, particularly the title track, “Happiness Is to Win a Big Prize.” His own style is a curious cross between Miles Davis of the L'Ascenseur Pour L'Echafaud period and bravura Italian folk traditions, and his companions here are similarly eclectic, notably the young pianist Stefano Bollani, who has recently gone on to become an ECM solo artist, as well as recording a couple of independent discs with this rhythm section of Jesper Bodilsen and Morten Lund. But John Abercrombie's spacious additions on guitar and Rava's long-time sparring partner Gianluca Petrella on trombone add a distinctive flavour to the sound of the whole album.