Few artists in the history of jazz have played piano with the expression and soul of Fred Kaz.
The master spent over 30 years as the musical director for the Second City, and was the most magical improvisational musician you could ever have heard perform. Fred's piano led both the audience, and the ensemble through adventures, tragedies and beautifully mundane moments. Fred made sure all was clear. The piano was his voice.
While his work on stage, as a composer and as a director, is amazing, Fred's jazz touches the heart. Sadly, it has been hard to find recordings of his music, however since Fred's passing in 2014 his wife Helen has been steadily producing his previously unreleased works.
This album was recorded in 1997, at the Ash Grove on the Pier, in Santa Monica, California.
I recently found this poem Fred wrote for me, after he and Helen visited my daughter and I, at our home in Muir Beach.
Where the river feeds the ocean
And the dry land meets the sea
And the hungry, saw-toothed coastline
Chews the gasping, high-tide surf,
I am harbored with my life-mate
By a sharing, gentle man;
And we all imagine futures
In the ever-present tense,
Letting friendship fertilize
each other's souls.
Fred Kaz 6/18/2013
We miss him very much.
Fred Kaz, Live at the Ash Grove Read the rest