Premiere: Hear Chick Corea Take On Jerome Kern’s ‘Yesterdays’


Chick Corea is set to issue the double album Plays (Concord Jazz) on Aug. 28.

(Photo: Toshi Sakurai/Chick Corea Prod.)

Hearing Chick Corea in any setting, it’s apparent that his interests and influences range beyond the music that listeners most associate with the pianist. And for Plays, a double album due out Aug. 28 through Concord Jazz, Corea investigates the work of composers who have left an indelible mark on his life—and music across genres.

Offerings veer from the classical world to bossa nova and jazz, and include some of the pianist’s own original pieces. Below, Corea’s interpretation of the Jerome Kern standard “Yesterdays” premieres.

There’s a sober quality to the live take, but Corea still summons the ability to swing the melody, his left hand playfully searching out the rhythm.

“The thing that I do is similar to what [Thelonious] Monk did, to what Bill Evans and Duke Ellington did, and moving back into another era of music, what Bach and Mozart and Beethoven did,” Corea said in a press release. “These were all pianists who were composers at heart.”

An unplanned analog to Plays are the streaming solo rehearsals Corea started during the pandemic, which have included material by some of the same composers he covers on the album. DB

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