Pianist Gerald Clayton has released a live album recorded at New York City’s iconic jazz venue, the Village Vanguard.
Happening: Live at the Village Vanguard is Clayton’s first release with Blue Note Records and is cut from 12 sets over a week-long residency at the long-running jazz haven. The pianist was joined by bassist Joe Sanders, drummer Marcus Gilmore, altoist Logan Richardson and tenorist Walter Smith III, who played across five of the seven tracks on the final release.
“I called it Happening to highlight the fact that this music is living, that we have a whole lot of happenings throughout the year, and performances at the Village Vanguard are some of the most special of those happenings,” Clayton explained in a statement. “It’s such a special, sacred place for the music. You really can feel the presence of what’s occurred in the room.”
Clayton mixed four original songs into his release, alongside his take on Billy Strayhorn’s “Take the Coltrane,” “Celia” by Bud Powell and popular jazz staple “Body and Soul.” The resulting performance is a formidable live set that helps establish Clayton’s presence in North American jazz.
Listen to Happening: Live at the Village Vanguard below: