Scott Joplin / Hyman,Dick - Complete Works For Piano | RECORD STORE DAY

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Between January and April 1975, the classically trained, multi-award-winning jazz pianist and composer Dick Hyman - whose astounding résumé includes playing with Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Benny Goodman, writing and arranging for Count Basie, and scoring most of the films of Woody Allen - went into RCA's Studio A in New York City and set down the definitive recording of ragtime legend Scott Joplin's piano works. In 1988, an hour-long selection from the five LPs was released on CD. Now at last, Sony Classical is issuing Hyman's entire Joplin album on three well-filled silver discs. This really is Joplin's complete piano output. It even includes the six short exercises that form his 1908 School of Ragtime, with their printed prefatory remarks read by the 92-year-old Eubie Blake, a friend of Joplin and a distinguished ragtime player in his own right. Also here are Joplin's less familiar marches and waltzes. And there's a bonus: the set contains Hyman's own twelve delightful improvisations on themes by Joplin, which he designed to demonstrate the composer's influence on the development of jazz harmony and melody. When the LPs were first released, Gramophone's jazz critic wrote that "the eminently musical quality of Hyman's playing is in evidence throughout the collection; he has the ability to characterise perfectly each piece and somehow to pinpoint every little harmonic subtlety and melodic felicity without in any way detracting from the conception as a whole... He pays as much attention to matters of tempo, texture, phrasing and dynamics as though he were doing the twenty-four Chopin Preludes. Two for instance I particularly enjoyed were Cascades with it's rippling lightness of touch and Scott Joplin's New Rag in which Hyman's cleanness of articulation and rhythmic exuberance are a joy.... Joplin well deserves this very handsome and well-recorded tribute."