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"The Wisdom of Notes"

By Doug Young
Wisdom is an appropriate metaphor for the depth and nuance of Fred Fried’s latest release. In this jazz trio with bassist Michael Moore and drummer Tony Tedesco, he explores originals as well as tunes by Rodgers and Hart, Legrand, Brubeck, and others. Fried’s influences, including Jim Hall and Kenny Burrell, are evident in the tasteful, mellow tone of the CD, but his fingerstyle approach—improvising with multiple voices and chord passages—helps Fried create his own unique voice. Having studied with George Van Eps, Fried has clearly absorbed his mentor’s legendary command of harmony. Fried’s seven-string nylon Zimnicki guitar sounds stunning throughout. Its depth and range of colors is most evident on solo intros or pieces like the beautiful “Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most,” which features Fried without the rest of the trio. This album offers pleasant sounds for casual listening and a wealth of “wisdom” for guitarists who take the time to listen more closely.