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  • Writer's pictureStevie Connor

Lynne Arriale Trio Release New Album 'Being Human' + Tour Dates Announced


Lynne  Arrialle


Being Human, pianist-composer Lynne Arriale's 17th album as a leader, is her fourth for Challenge Records International. A suite of 10 original compositions, the album celebrates the ways that our lives are enriched by acts of passion, courage, love, persistence, heart, soul, curiosity, faith and joy.


Featuring bassist Alon Near and drummer Lukasz Zyta, the album explores these life-affirming facets of humankind. Many of the songs are dedicated to people who’ve inspired Arriale, including climate activist Greta Thunberg, National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman and Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai.


“I wrote this suite in response to the division and turmoil in our world,” Arriale says. “The music focuses on qualities we all share, that define our humanity. I hope this album will be uplifting and convey a sense of unity and optimism. The dedications reflect my admiration for those who I feel personify the traits that inspired the music.”


In recent years, Lynne’s compositions and albums have reflected current social issues. Chimes of Freedom (2020) highlights the worldwide immigration crisis and the experiences of refugees who risk everything to find a better life for themselves and their families. The Lights Are Always On (2022) examines the life-changing events wrought by COVID-19. Some compositions are named in honor of heroes, including those who served as caregivers on the front lines of the pandemic and those who defended American democracy. In Being Human, Arriale affirms the need for love, hope and unity in a world torn by the negative effects of political and cultural polarization. It is a musical inspiration to fully appreciate the incredible potential in each of us, and to best express what it means to be human.


On this session Lynne is joined by bassist Alon Near and drummer Lukasz Zyta, both outstanding, in-demand musicians on the international jazz scene. The trio creates the sort of engrossing musical conversation that has become a trademark of Lynne’s groups. With beauty and eloquence, Passion, dedicated to Greta Thunberg, ignites the suite in a burst of color and texture. Lynne’s energetic solo drives the narrative with gorgeous lyricism. With its decisive 6/8 time signature that suggests the ironclad, implacable will of the Ukrainian people, Courage is a powerful composition that highlights the trio’s polyrhythmic interplay. Love, dedicated to humankind, evokes the purity and pristine simplicity of a Bach chorale, where every note informs its gorgeous, melodic lyricism, and every dissonance enriches the composition’s harmonic palette.


The trio creates a sense of majesty as it performs this heartfelt anthem. Reflecting the essence of its subject, Lynne’s gospel composition Faith is a simple, honest work of art. Its folk-like melody blends smoothly with Lukasz’s half-time groove. Curiosity, dedicated to the autistic mathematician and physicist Jacob Barnett, is spontaneous, unpredictable, and surprising, with free improvisations that develop the theme in musical streams of consciousness. Soul is dedicated to Amanda Gorman, National Youth Poet Laureate.


Polyrhythmic colors and a deep, swinging groove capture both the rich history of jazz and Lynne’s love for this uniquely American art form. Persistence, dedicated to Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai, reflects her tenacious, indomitable spirit and finds the players engaged in solos by Malala Yousafzai a compelling musical dialogue. Joy, dedicated to professor and author Brené Brown, is played as a calypso. The trio’s performance features exuberant solos by Lynne, Alon, and Lukasz, and abounds with happiness, energy, and celebration. Sending a heartfelt message to her listeners, Lynne closes the album with a reprise of Love, played with ‘voices’ on the Yamaha Clavinova.


Iconic pianist and composer Richie Beirach calls Being Human “an important, stunningly beautiful, powerful musical and spiritual statement. Lynne recognizes the tough realities of the world we live in, but she chooses to highlight the positive in us. Her compositions are masterpieces that reveal the pain, love, joy, suffering and triumphs of extraordinary individuals. Lynne is so much more than a jazz pianist. She, like the heroes she celebrates, exudes the wonderful essence of humanity. I don't know anyone more empathetic, big-hearted or generous of spirit.”


Esteemed pianist, composer and author Andy LaVerne says, "Lynne has crafted a superb thought-provoking storyline selection of music which is closely tied to a thought-provokingstoryline. Each of her original compositions is a well-crafted musical \statement of depth and gravitas, balanced by a spirit of invention and freedom. The members of the trio interact with telepathic communication and provide the listener with a truly visceral experience. With Being Human, Lynne once again demonstrates her ability to assemble the finest players, write the most compelling compositions and weave melodic phrases of great emotion, clarity and creativity, all while conveying a captivating narrative. The blend of opposing elements, such as intensity and sensitivity, drive and restraint, strength and gentleness, consonance and dissonance, jubilance and poignancy, serve to make his music uniquely Arriale. Lynne Arriale exemplifies being human.”


Being recognized as “one of the most exciting pianists in contemporary jazz,” (The Guardian, UK) pianist Lynne Arriale has performed on the most prestigious international concert stages over the past 30 years. Jazz Police called her "the poet laureate of her generation." JazzTimes said of her, “Lynne Arriale’s music lies at the synaptic intersection where brain meets heart, where body meets soul. She is one of jazzdom’s most intensely unique voices." She has been consistently praised as having a "singular voice" as a pianist, bandleader, and composer. Following the release of The Lights Are Always On, Jazz thing observed, “Lynne Arriale has been one of the great poets on the piano for decades.” Jazz Journal commented, “On her 16th album,[Arriale] demonstrates that she is clearly one of the best contemporary jazz pianists.“


Lynne won the Great American Jazz Piano Competition, and her 16 critically acclaimed albums have topped the JazzWeek Radio Charts and received “Best of” honors in major publications. She toured Japan with “100 Golden Fingers” with Tommy Flanagan, Hank Jones, Monty Alexander, Cedar Walton, Kenny Barron, Harold Mabern, Roger Kellaway, Junior Mance and Ray Bryant. She has performed at major international festivals including Montreux, Burghausen, Gilmore, Spoleto Arts, Montreal, Monterey, North Sea, Stuttgart, Pori, San Francisco, Ottawa, Zagreb, Perth, Brisbane, Rouen, Sardinia, Rochester, Wigan, Poznan, Estoril, Inverness, Cork, and San Javier, and has given five performances at the Kennedy Center.


Alon Near attended Berklee College of Music and holds an Honorary Degree from the New School of Jazz. The Israeli bassist-composer has performed with multi-Grammy Award Winner Billy Childs, DownBeat award-winning saxophonist Eli Degibri, and pianist Johnny O’Neal. He has appeared at international venues including the New York Winter Jazz Festival, Red Sea Jazz Festival, Carnegie Hall, Rostov International, and Lincoln Center. Alon was awarded1st prize at the Rostov International Jazz Competition and was a finalist in The Jazz Musician Competition at the Rimon School for Contemporary Music.


Lukasz ZytaDrummer Lukasz Zyta has performed, toured, and collaborated with a distinguished roster of internationally renowned artists, and has appeared on over 50 CDs. He has worked with jazz icons Lee Konitz, Bennie Maupin, Wadada Leo Smith, Dino Saluzzi, Dayna Stephens, Stephen Riley, David Murray, Chris Cheek, David Friedman, Bobby Watson, Brad Terry, and Ingrid Jensen. Based in his native Poland, Lukasz has since 2007 been a faculty member at the Academy of Music in Krakow.



TOUR DATES Lynne Arriale Trio

Saturday, May 4 & Sunday, May 5, 2024 – Metronome Brewery, Minneapolis, MN

Friday, May 10, 2024 – Constellation, Chicago, IL

Saturday, May 18, 2024 – Polyrhythms Third Sunday Jazz Series, Davenport, IA

Friday, May 24, 2024 – The Jazz Kitchen, Indianapolis, MN

 


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